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Cbc Itntcherbocher press, "Hew J 

Electrotyped, Printed, and Bbund by 
G. P. Putnam's Sons 


No apology is needed for the appearance of this volume. 
The contents are unique. The theory I set forth is new, 
but the proofs of its truth are forceful. The discovery I 
tell of is fateful to many interests for good to those of the 
people, for evil undoubtedly to those of pretenders and 
others who have so long depended on public ignorance to 
profit by public credulity. 

The object I have in view is very plain, and can be readily 
defined. Circumstances of my early life placed me in close 
commune with Nature. I studied her ways and observed 
her laws, not thinking at the time that the lessons learned 
amid some of the most beautiful adornments of this world 
would ultimately lead to consequences of vast personal 
importance to myself. Business considerations first set me 
on the path, a tasteful interest held me to it with steadfast 
care, and the prospect of a brilliant discovery in the remote 
distance gave me energy and zeal to progress towards what 
seemed to be a goal that promised an enduring benefit to 
the whole cause of humanity. 

I attained to it after long and careful experiments, and I 
have held to it despite the wildest efforts of jealous rivals or 
fearful opponents to displace me. 

Many men, among them some of the most prominent in 
the field of science, elaborate a theory and then work with 
one end in view till they establish it, or think they establish 
it. My methods were not of that character. I fashioned 


no hypothesis. I did not look for something previously 
outlined in the mind. I simply studied and investigated, 
and the light at length broke in upon me, and opened out a 
discovery that I at once recognized as being of the utmost 
interest and importance. I tested its value, and found 
nothing wanting. It withstood the severest trial, and main- 
tained itself under all circumstances. It promised to reform 
existing methods in the treatment of disease, to expose the 
errors that have been for centuries in vogue, to simplify 
human knowledge in fields of vital moment to the health 
and welfare of my fellow-men. Sweeping in its influence it 
was simple in its nature, and calculated to wipe out all the 
complexities of hygienic and curative principles by its one- 
ness and intensity. 

If I had withheld it, I should justly have exposed myself 
to condemnation, and might, with equal propriety, have been 
called upon to justify my conduct ; to make it known is, 
therefore, a duty which I owe to myself, and yet more 
to the people who must be benefited by my work. 

Ill-health had long held me in its toils. Every curative 
resource known to medical science had failed to afford me 
relief. My condition was growing worse, and hope was well 
nigh abandoned, when, in the line of my life-long studies, 
I found something that did what physicians and their 
materia medica had not done. I applied to my own case 
principles which I had learned were those of Nature herself, 
and they profited me where art had not availed. As soon 
as this result was realized, and I had leisure to weigh the 
full force of my discovery, I began to look backward, and to 
reason from the results of my experience back to first 
causes. My sufferings had been complex, my ailments had 
been various, and, according to medical theory, very different 
in origin and kind. But one form of treatment cured me, 
and the inference was inevitable that, if one method sufficed 
for a few diseases, it would probably suffice for more, and 
possibly for all. I recalled the drift of my inquiries and of 
my knowledge in the plant world, and formulated the idea 


that all disease might perhaps be the consequence of a single 
cause. Following up this train of thought, I had no diffi- 
culty, in course of time, in strengthening the theory by 
practical experiment. By observation and inquiry, I soon 
had the soundness of the suggestion sufficiently established 
to carry conviction to any unprejudiced mind. But more 
was needed. If all diseases are traceable to one cause, all 
should alike yield to one mode of treatment. Of the truth 
of the former I had no doubt, but the latter could only be 
proved by experiment, and by satisfactory results ensuing 
from actual trial. The opportunity for this soon came. The 
remarkable fact that I, a chronic invalid, abandoned by the 
doctors because unrelieved by any of their medicaments, 
had cured myself, speedily became known abroad among my 
neighbors and friends, and some of them came to learn 
whether I could do for them what I had done already, so 
well, for myself. Thus was I afforded the chance I sought. 
I cautiously gave them the benefit of my discovery, and with 
only one uniform result. All were cured. 

My position was made at once impregnable. My knowl- 
edge of Nature's laws had served me in a dire extremity. 
The experience so gained had led me to outline a theory 
which reason convinced me was correct, and finally that 
theory had been established by incontrovertible testimony, 
in the course of which no flaw or error could be detected. 

There now remained but one thing of much weight to be 
decided. It was apparent that I held at my disposal a dis- 
covery of no small importance and value. Should I reserve 
it to myself, or give it to the public ? Either course pre- 
sented a difficulty. If I retained it I should lay myself open 
very justly to the charge of withholding something replete 
with advantage to mankind, and if I should publish it such 
a fundamental upturning of all existing methods and prac- 
tices in medical science would follow that I must be pre- 
pared to encounter violent antagonism, and to defend myself 
against the disciples of a system that had a record of ages to 
sustain it. 


If nothing else, a sense of duty to others must alone have 
speedily solved that question. I certainly had no right to 
retain an exclusive knowledge of any thing calculated to 
benefit others, and neither had I any right to allow some 
personal inconveniences to stand in the way of such a course. 
My resolution was accordingly soon made. I extended the 
operations of my discovery so as to leave no possible room 
for doubt as to its universal application, and then I deter- 
mined to submit the whole case to the public. 

This book is the consequence of that resolve. In its pages 
I have given .a detailed statement of the new discovery 
which points to a unity in the cause and treatment of 
disease. From day to day steps are being made by advo- 
cates of the old theories which advance them slowly in the 
direction I have taken. Intermittent fever, cholera, scarlet- 
fever, influenza, and the recently named " Grippe," as well 
as other diseases, are acknowledged due to the presence of 
microbes, but the time will come when the people must free 
themselves from the bondage of ignorance now urged upon 
them, to accept the undoubted fact that all disease is due to 
the same cause, and that treatment to be beneficial must be 
directed to the single object of stopping fermentation in the 
system by destroying the micro-organisms that give rise to 
it. This is no longer a theory subject to refutation or need- 
ing proof. In the subsequent pages I have endeavored to 
bring it within the grasp of the most superficial reader, but 
I have also furnished irrefutable testimony to its truth and 
stability. It is not an hypothesis but a demonstrated law, 
and its reality is well fixed by practical experiment and by 
the evidence of accomplished facts. 

The subject is of interest not only to a few, but to the 
many ; to everybody in fact who may be subject to disease 
or ailments of any kind. It promises relief where cures have 
hitherto been deemed impossible, and it places the sick and 
ailing in a position where they shall be free from the 
expense and uncertainty of customary methods, and able to 
follow out the only known rational treatment for themselves. 


I do not expect to be exempt from criticism. On the 
contrary, I invite inquiry and examination in a spirit of hon- 
est impartiality. Physicians will probably act under the 
customary impulse of doubting, possibly of condemning, 
until my remedy shall have been subjected by them to the 
full light of actual test, and that I solicit. At the same 
time it is but just alike to myself and to the profession of 
medicine, to add that many members among the most pro- 
gressive in that profession have already accepted my teach- 
ing and availed themselves of my disc9very. 

Thus far, no explanation or statement of it has been 
given to the world except in brief notices and superficial 
sketches for the benefit of those who have displayed an 
interest in the subject. This book was therefore necessary. 
It could not have been omitted, neither should it be delayed. 
It is a challenge to the world of science, and a help, perhaps 
even it may be a salvation, to the sick. It will be a revela- 
tion and a source of instruction to all. It will work a reform 
in the treatment of disease, and a commotion among the 
disciples of antiquated teachings. I understand its force, 
and can estimate its influence. I realize already the criti- 
cisms that it must encounter; but I ask for it a careful 
perusal and can wait with equanimity for the time near at 
hand when it will receive the approval and indorsement of 
every impartial reader. 

























NOTE 234 


































WILLIAM RADAM ....... Frontispiece 



RUST ON ROSE LEAVES ... .... 22 


PNEUMONIA .......... 28 


MICROBES IN A STALE EGG . . . . . . -31 



VACCINE VIRUS (OLD) . . ... . 40 
















FROM A TUMOR. (CANCER ?) . . . . . .84 




CAVITIES IN LUNG . . . . . . -94 






NEW YORK . . . . . . . . 104 



CARBUNCLE ON THE NECK . . . ... .112 






CHOLERA MORBUS. (BERLIN) . . . . . 137 






SYPHILIS (?) . . . 155 


























IF we attempt to trace back any great element of knowl- 
edge to its primary source, we find ourselves inevitably led 
up to Nature. Not the Sciences only, but the Arts, the 
appliances, aids, and engines of modern civilization, the 
devices of Humanity, the weapons with which natural forces 
themselves are overcome, and by which wondrous powers 
are controlled and utilized, are but the outcome of knowl- 
edge that sprang from intricate causes in the material world 
around us, and which experiment and experience have put 
into practical form. 

A great book of revelation has lain open before the 
human intellect at all times and throughout all ages, which, 
if properly studied, contains the germ of all knowledge. Its 
pages are the blue skies and the green fields ; they are seen 
in the rocks and the oceans, in the rivers and the rain, in 
the air and the clouds, in the sunshine and the darkness. In 
Nature's laws we have guides that put us on our way and 
indicate the course that must be pursued if any useful goal 
is to be attained. We have enough within the scope of 
vision not only to explain the phenomena of life, but to 
bring within our comprehension the first steps in human 
progress and the incentives that stimulate the life and 
energies of man. 


Not this only, but amid the refinements of human knowl- 
edge at this day, if we would probe farther into the 
mysteries that even yet surround us, and ever will, we must, 
if we are wise, take our first lesson at Nature's hand. 
Even the mechanical inventor, the engineer, the architect, 
far as their calling seems to be removed from Natural 
Science, must often unwittingly fall back on first principles 
and be forced to acknowledge that Nature has been before 
them in the field. The steam-engine is but a machine where 
fuel is transformed into power, and the human body is but a 
like device only vastly more perfect, one, that is to say, in 
which greater results are obtained from smaller causes, and 
which in truth forms the standard to which men still are 
aiming in the workshop and the laboratory. Insects afford 
to the mechanician examples of the power which he fails to 
rival, but which he seeks to imitate and in which he learns a 
lesson. The human eye is repeated in the telescope and the 
microscope, the stereoscope plays upon the phenomena of 
double vision, the familiar zoetrope takes advantage of the 
duration of impression on the optic nerve, and the phono- 
graph reproduces the atmosphere's vibrations and those of 
the mechanism of the organ of hearing. 

But simple as the problem seems to be when we say that 
Nature, as a teacher with an open book before her, is ready 
to be our guide, simple as it seems to be to follow the 
instructions put before us, the cost and the trouble are great 
when success is to be attained. We are apt to think that 
man in this nineteenth century has arrived at a high degree 
of civilization. So perhaps he has, but it is only relative. 
The possibilities of the future cannot be divined. Yet the 
expenditure of human energy necessary to bring about even 
the present condition of the race has been enormous, some- 
thing beyond computation, beyond, indeed, any thing that 
the mind can realize. Sometimes we hear of great discov- 
eries being stumbled over unexpectedly, but such stories are 
too often fiction. A pretty tale was told of Sir Isaac New- 
ton, but it was mythical, and the laws of gravitation were 


the result of prodigious mental labor and research. Darwin 
did not formulate the theory of evolution and the origin of 
the species till after years of observation and earnest toil. 
James Watt, at much cost of labor, thought, and time, built 
the steam-engine, but it has taken years of earnest endeavor 
and thousands of able men to bring it to that degree of per- 
fection which places us within a few days' reach of the Old 
World. Twenty-four hundred years ago, when ancient Rome 
was but a village, hardly older than is this Republic, Thales 
discovered electricity. Benjamin Franklin drew it from the 
clouds, and a century has passe^l since Galvani saw its rela- 
tion to the human body. A generation that has gone 
remembered the electric light and the principle of the tele- 
graph as playthings for students, but it is only now that we 
have attained to any thing like a conception of the powers 
and uses of this unseen but universal force, still less had it 
until recently been brought under man's control. Even now 
its full capabilities are unknown, and its nature is only in 
part comprehended by philosophers and not at all even by 
those who handle it most frequently. Yet it is serving us 
day and night, aiding the operations of commerce, facilitat- 
ing trade, contributing to our comfort and convenience, 
protecting our houses, lighting our ships, and adding to the 
machinery of war as well as of peace. But all is the result of 
a vast expenditure of mental power, and all has come about 
from a beginning that finds its place in Nature. 

So in like manner the natural properties of air and water 
have been made subservient to human wants. The elasticity 
of the one is equally applicable to check the recoil of great 
guns, to stop our trains, to fire a bullet, or to close a door ; 
while the unyielding resistance of the other raises elevators, 
compresses merchandise, launches ships, assists the engineer 
in his grandest works, and is applicable to numberless uses 
that go almost unnoticed in every-day life. But again lives 
have fallen, energies have been exhausted, and numberless 
experiments have been gone through before these results 
could be attained. 


The action of Nature is unceasing. There is no such thing 
as rest. 

There is no Death ! The dust we tread 
Shall change beneath the summer shower 

To golden grain or mellow fruit, 
Or rainbow-tinted flower. 

The granite rocks disorganize 

To feed the hanging moss they bear, . 

The forest trees drink daily life 

From out the viewless air. 

There is no Death ! The leaves may fall, 

The flowers may fade and pass away ; 
They only wait through wintry hours 

For coming of the May. 

There is no Death ! An angel form 

Walks o'er the earth with silent tread ; 
He bears our best-loved things away, 

And then we call them dead. 

Ceaseless energy is everywhere apparent. Let the mind 
sweep for a moment through the boundless realms of space ; 
all is motion. An infinity of worlds is circling with incon- 
ceivable velocity under unerring laws through every region 
in the boundless universe, and intervening space is quivering 
with the invisible influences of light, heat, electricity, and 
gravitation. There is no rest. 

Look again with the eye of Science into the inmost com- 
position of a piece of metal, and what do we see ? Myriads 
upon myriads of indivisible atoms separated from each 
other in a never-ending, never-dying state of rapid vibra- 
tion ; of extreme susceptibility to the faintest influence of 
heat or magnetism, bound into close proximity by an 
inconceivable force, but ready to enter into new conditions 
whenever the circumstances are favorable. 

And as there is no rest, so there is no destruction. With 
all the changes that are going on in consequence of the rest- 
less energy of man and the unceasing operations of Nature, 
the amount of matter on this globe is hardly different from 
what it was thousands of ages ago, when fern forests covered 


the earth or Tangles flourished alone in the hot, damp 
atmosphere that surrounded primordial life, when skulless 
creatures monopolized the waters and before the first land 
animals had appeared. 

Matter is never destroyed. Forms may change, but that 
is all. The candle burns and it ceases to exist, but it has 
only been altered. The material is there. The carbon and 
the hydrogen have made new combinations and have gone 
away into space. Heat and electricity were developed during 
the change, but nothing is lost ; nothing is destroyed. 

" Earth that nourished thee shall claim 
Thy growth, to be resolved to earth again, 
And, lost each human trace, surrendering up 
Thine individual being shalt thou go 
To mix forever with the elements, 
To be a brother to the insensible rock 
And to the sluggish clod, which the rude swain 
Turns with his share and treads upon. The oak 
Shall send his roots abroad and pierce thy mould." 

We do not know what life is. We cannot confidently 
define its origin. We are unable to say with certainty how 
Nature begins her work, but we can see how she proceeds 
after she has begun. We dare not affirm positively what 
produces the monera, but we can trace the growth of cells, 
the assimilation of food, and the processes by which Nature 
carries out her never-ceasing law of change. For the con- 
tinuance of the functions attendant upon the presence of 
life, the imbibition of new matter is constantly necessary, 
and with it the exudation of the old tissues and of the refuse, 
as it were, left after a process of chemical combinations, is 
equally essential. The complex action of glandular organs, 
the means by which various chemical processes are brought 
about and perfected, are among the things which Science 
has not yet taught us, but we have advanced to the point 
where organic compounds may be produced in the labora- 
tory, and it is impossible to say how far that step on an 
entirely new road may take us. The manufacture of salicin 
is one of the best-known illustrations of this. 


Organic bodies are adapted to the conditions that sur- 
round them. Reference is made particularly to conditions 
of atmosphere, temperature, and moisture. The vegetation 
of the tropics is vastly different from that in northern lati- 
tudes, and marine and aquatic plants differ in construction 
from those which flourish in the air as much as fishes differ 
from the amphibia. In both the animal and the vegetable 
kingdoms again, parasites exist in the utmost variety of form 
and in the greatest number, plants passing through the 
whole course of their existence on other plants, and both 
vegetable and animal formations preying upon the highest 
forms of organic life. No observant person can fail to see 
examples of this, for they are before him at every turn. 
Many of these are direct descendants from the first forms of 
vegetable life that appeared upon the earth. The well- 
known and popular mistletoe is but a parasite like the 
lichens that give color to the bark of old or unhealthy trees, 
or the mildew that in wet seasons dims the beauty of the 
lilac leaves. Some are absolutely microscopical, not visible 
to the naked vision, appearing as discolorations only under 
a low power, but developing into well-formed organisms 
when submitted to the eye through the medium of high 
magnifying instruments. 

The distinctions between animal and vegetable life have at 
no time been well defined, and recent investigations into the 
causes of disease and into the nature of the simplest organic 
forms render the possibility of such distinction more difficult 
than ever. 

Both organic worlds have the same origin. The primitive 
organism probably branched off into three, one leading on- 
wards to animal life, another to vegetables, and the third to 
a neutral formation, some members of which are more 
nearly allied to plants and some to animals. This division 
is found chiefly in the waters, both saline and fresh, but in 
incalculable numbers. Some of them form the slime that is 
found in damp places, among decaying vegetation in the 
humid atmosphere of some forests, and again forming the 


yellow discoloration that is often to be seen in the tan beds. 
Others still very minute are covered with a flinty substance, 
and when accumulated in masses they form the peculiar 
kind of slate known as Tripoli, while again others are nothing 
more than floating particles of matter whose prime object 
of existence seems not to extend beyond a division and sub- 
division into innumerable repetitions of themselves. 

It is more than probable that in the human body there 
are at all times and under all circumstances myriads of these 
minute organizations. If they be of an inert character, 
or limited in quantity in a strongly healthy person, their 
presence may be unnoticed. But if the system be weakened, 
or the nature of the parasite be changed, or if its numbers 
be greatly increased, disease and death are the result. 

A remarkable discovery has recently been made in the 
West. For some time a disease has been prevalent among 
cattle, which has been known to farmers as the " corn-stalk 
disease." It appears that in late autumn or winter cattle 
are turned into fields of Indian corn, from which the ears 
have been removed, or which has been "topped," to clean 
up the remnants of leaves and tops. After a few days one 
and another of the cattle are taken ill with a malady which 
may cause death in from twenty-four hours to ten days. It 
is said to be an acute blood-poisoning, with high fever. The 
pulse is weak and respiration rapid. The animal sometimes 
bellows, and will chase other animals, or will stand by itself 
apart and be loth to move. They drink and retain the power 
to swallow. The mucous surfaces are congested. The secre- 
tion of milk slackens and ceases. A post-mortem examina- 
tion shows evidence of acute septic febrile disease, which, 
however, is not contagious. 

At first the malady puzzled the farmers, who failed alto- 
gether to account for it. Only certain fields, or parts of 
fields, were dangerous, but stock-owners never -could tell 
whether it would be safe, or what would be the conse- 
quences of turning a herd into a fodder field. Various 
theories were raised, but only to be knocked down by ex- 


perience. It was thought to be caused by lack of salt or 
water, but it was seen in cattle that had both. The dryness 
of the fodder was blamed, but without reason, as experi- 
ment showed. It was attributed to smut, a vegetable para- 
site known to botanists as ustilago maidis, but cattle fed 
with large quantities of smut were not made ill. At last 
the growing corn was examined, and patches were found 
where the plants were stunted if attacked in early summer. 
The lower leaves died, becoming yellow, with colored streaks. 
The roots were unhealthy, and the ears did not mature. Re- 
sort was had to the microscope, which at once revealed the 
presence of a minute organism that is sufficient to account 
for the whole phenomenon. It is a germ or microbe closely 
resembling that of the Southern cattle plague. In shape 
ovoid, its length is not more than one sixth that of a blood 
corpuscle, and it moves by a sort of rolling motion. These 
organisms have been cultivated in media outside of the 
body, and the injection of the cultures into animals has 
produced symptoms exactly resembling those of "corn-stalk 

Here we have a close connection between cause and effect, 
and one that is absolutely proved in both directions. We 
trace disease back to the microbe, and then producing the 
microbe by artificial means, we are enabled in turn to pro- 
duce the disease. Nothing could be clearer, nothing more 

It must, however, be remembered, that although these 
minute organizations have been studied so closely that they 
have been formed into a separate kingdom and accurately 
classified, we have no knowledge as to how many different 
varieties of them there may be. They differ greatly, but 
when occupying the system of the higher animals the same 
form always produces the same disease. The microbe which 
gives rise to the symptoms of the corn-stalk disease is very 
similar to that which has been identified in the Southern 
cattle plague. Whether they are the same is not yet ascer- 
tained ; if they are, the cattle plague is more than probably 


caused by the animals eating diseased food. But as the 
symptoms are different, it is likely that the microbes in 
the two cases will present some minute distinctions when 
closely examined, and that the differences are not due to 
extraneous causes, as has sometimes been suggested. This 
is rendered more probable from the fact that in the West it 
is chiefly horned cattle that are affected, while in the South 
pigs are seen to suffer most. 

For just as all animals have special parasites, so they are 
more or less susceptible to different microbes. For example, 
the germ which produces a certain disease in man may not 
necessarily give rise to a similar disease, or to any, in a lower 
animal. It does sometimes, but not invariably. As a rule, 
it may be taken that each disease has its special germ ; and 
again, although this is given with more reserve, that each 
animal is distinctively susceptible to special germs. A 
horse may be placed in proximity to horned cattle and not 
be affected by the disease from which they are suffering, 
and in like manner a cow may be in the same stable with a 
horse that is sick and not be inconvenienced. Such examples 
illustrate the rule. 

Among the exceptions may be instanced the undoubted 
fact that glanders in a horse may be conveyed to man, as 
has frequently been attested. One of the most recent illus- 
trations of this was the case of Dr. Hoffman of the Vienna 
General Hospital. That gentleman had been making some 
observations about the bacillus of glanders, when, suffering 
from a slight attack of muscular rheumatism, he gave him- 
self a hypodermic injection of morphia. The syringe he 
had, however, had been previously used for inoculation of 
the cultures of glanders bacillus, and care had not been 
taken to cleanse it. The disease was thus conveyed through 
probably a few only of the microbes being left on the instru- 
ment, and in less than three weeks Dr. Hoffman died. 

From all of which it follows that one species of animal 
may eat with impunity impure food which in another species 
of animal would bring about disease. It will also be under- 


stood how the cooking of food may make it harmless simply 
by destroying the vitality of the germ. This, nevertheless, 
is not to be received as a never-failing protection, because it 
has been proved by experiment repeatedly that the degree 
of heat usually required and used in cooking is not sufficient 
to remove the danger, but, on the contrary, that a high 
degree of temperature, continued for a considerable time, 
may be, and most generally is, requisite for that purpose. 

Nor is it necessary that food should be impure or diseased 
before microbes or protista are taken into the system. The 
atmosphere is full of them. The difficulty of investigation 
is great. Lives have been devoted to an endeavor to solve 
the question of spontaneous generation, and many capable 
observers are of opinion that these germs may, under favor- 
able circumstances, be originated, those conditions being 
merely a suitable medium and a steady, uniform, and proper 
temperature. If that theory be correct, it is clear that no 
precautions can be used which will prevent the formation of 
microbes in the human system, and then we must be content 
to destroy what we cannot prevent. If they are produced 
spontaneously we may possibly limit the production by 
changing the conditions necessary to their existence, but 
the more practical resort would be to kill them after they 
are formed, and thus remove their power for evil. 

But independently of all this, they abound in the at- 
mosphere. We take -them into the system through the 
lungs. In close rooms, where several persons are collected, 
as in factories, workshops, and often in theatres, public 
rooms, law courts, churches, and in ill-ventilated bedrooms, 
they are most abundant, and they increase with such 
marvellous rapidity that in an hour a comparatively pure 
atmosphere may be converted into one that is exceedingly 

It may be asked, that being the case, why persons who 
breathe in such places are not always struck down with dis- 
ease. Because, probably, the particular germs floating in 
the air are not such as would give rise to a particular com- 



plaint in man, but in all such instances they render the air 
unhealthy and unfit for respiration. In a sick-room it is 
more likely that they are of the variety which would 
originate a given disease in man, and then we apply the 
word infection. 



How do these atmospheric microbes come into existence ? 
Some investigators still maintain that their carefully con- 
ducted experiments show the truth of the theory of sponta- 
neous generation. Many, especially in the German schools, 
hold the view that primitive organisms, of which more will 
be said in a subsequent chapter, are formed by means of an 
inherent force in matter drawing together the elements 
which we know to prevail in, indeed to constitute, organic 

From a strictly scientific, or especially from a biological, 
point of view this question is of vast importance, but in the 
present consideration it is of less moment. We are dealing 
not with the origin of life, but with the presence and 
destruction of microbes, and can afford to regard the more 
abstruse problem as one of incidental interest only. This, 
however, we certainly know that atmospheric microbes 
may, and do, come from the earth and vegetation, or from 
the lungs and exhalations of animals. We have no reason 
for saying that they may not multiply in the air itself, but 
we know that they are ever floating about us in inconceiva- 
ble numbers, and that while they are more numerous in 
cities and towns than in the open country, and in wet places 
than in a dry soil, yet they are found appreciably every- 
where, except, so far as we can ascertain, on the tops of 
high mountains. Moisture is favorable to their propagation 
and existence. Some are adapted to live in cold regions, 


but more require a warm temperature. Changes of weather 
seem also to favor them, and a marked rise or fall in the 
barometer has been noticed to affect their numbers and 

I have observed that in plants which I had kept too 
warm and then suddenly exposed to cold, a fungoid growth 
could be detected in twenty-four hours. The leaves would 
then change in color and either shrivel up or wilt. The 
roots would fail to take up moisture, the spongioles being 
apparently paralyzed and their functions destroyed. Exam- 
ining them carefully it could be seen that something like a 
process of fermentation was going on around them in 
other words, that fungoid exhalations or microbes were 
gathering upon them, that these gradually extended through 
the rootlets, while those on the leaves were reaching out to 
the stems and buds. All the green color of the plant disap- 
peared, the coloring matter apparently yielding to chemical 
decomposition under the exhausting influence of microbes, 
and finally the plant would turn yellow, droop, and die. 

Place a child predisposed to indisposition, or even a 
healthy person, in circumstances equally unfavorable and 
the consequences are similar. A change from a warm to a 
cold atmosphere is one of -the most common causes of 
disease. The conditions of life in this country are especially 
calculated to furnish ample illustrations of this. In summer, 
people are apt to counteract the effects of heat by removing 
portions of their covering and seeking a cool resting-place, 
glad sometimes of a current of air which feels refreshing yet 
is fraught with peril. In winter most of us live in over- 
heated houses, from which necessity takes us often suddenly 
into a wet or cold external atmosphere. The consequence 
is a cold, or inflammation of the lungs, or worse. A cough 
is one of the first symptoms, and on examination it is found 
that a peculiar microbe has attached itself to the bronchial 
tubes or upper air-passages, producing an irritation, and the 
cough is Nature's effort to get rid of it. Or it may become 
attached to the mucous membrane of the nose, giving rise 


to what is variously known as " cold in the head," coryza, 
and acute catarrh. It can readily be understood that in the 
latter case it is more easy to remove the cause of the 
trouble, but where there is a cough the disease germs may 
spread downward to the lungs, extending their influence 
throughout the tissues, and producing bronchitis or pneu- 
monia as the case might be. 

Dr. Wetter is of opinion that the special disease-germ in 
pneumonia, pneumococcus, may be conveyed for short dis- 
tances through the air, or by a third person, or by clothing. 
This would rank pneumonia as both contagious and infec- 
tious, which accords with the modern idea that it is something 
very different from a simple inflammation, as was supposed 
a few years ago. The microbe of this disease is not killed 
by drying, and may, as is believed, be preserved for years in 
a dry condition and then made to renew all its activity on 
being placed under favorable conditions again. It has been 
found in the saliva of a person who had recently recovered, 
and thus there is every indication that the disease so 
common in this country should be regarded as dangerously 
contagious. If the microbe be not destroyed the disease 
may become chronic, or develop into asthma or consump, 
tion, and end only in death. The propagation of microbes 
is rapid and enormous, some calculations having led to the 
belief that in one hour less than half a dozen may, under 
favorable conditions, increase to fifty millions. 

In the course of my observations and experiments I have 
often observed that in times when coughs were prevalent, 
and when what appeared to be ordinary colds assumed the 
character of an epidemic, vegetation was also affected. 
Plants did not flourish in their customary manner. The 
young leaves chiefly suffered ; sometimes evidences of the 
existence of microbes became visible on the more tender 
parts, and the whole plant would assume a stricken and un- 
healthy appearance. 

The changes which generally occur in spring-time 
changes not only in temperature but in the degree of moist- 


ure or dryness of the atmosphere are especially calculated 
to produce disease in vegetation exactly as they do in man, 
and the affection is more severe, more difficult to combat, 
and more apt to lead to a bad termination than is the heat 
of summer or the steady cold of winter. 

Plants kept in places where they were away from the full 
exhilarating influence of light, or in an atmosphere where 
there was no free circulation of air, would speedily become 
sickly, and their growth, if any, would be weak and un- 

Man, submitted to similar conditions, suffers in the same 
way, and children brought up in close places, or even being 
made to work in them, where air and light are insufficiently 
supplied, become stunted in growth. The tissues of their 
bodies are weakened, their senses are not fully developed, 
and their minds are imperfectly formed. Poverty, crime, 
and much misery are too often the lot of such persons, and 
all their misfortune may be attributed to the fact of their 
having been confined in surroundings where disease germs 
are so abundant that the microbes necessarily obtain access 
to the blood and are circulated with it through all parts 
of the system. 

I may here direct attention to two well-known diseases, 
whooping-cough and diphtheria, by way of illustrating fur- 
ther some points that I have mentioned. Both of these 
may result from infection, and one, if not both, may also 
arise from the use or presence of impure water or decaying 
vegetation. They are, however, produced by a different 
form of germ, although in each case the seat of the trouble 
is very local and well defined. It is always primarily in the 
throat, but the microbe that produces diphtheria cannot 
engender a whooping-cough, and, vice versa, the germ that 
gives rise to whooping-cough never excites diphtheria. That 
they do not bring about disease in everybody who inhales 
them is simply due to the fact that the condition of the 
throat is not favorable to their development, or that the 
vital powers of the individual are sufficiently strong to resist 


them. It will be understood, therefore, how it is that almost 
all cases of diphtheria are preceded by what is called a cold. 

The special germ of this terrible disease has been identified 
and isolated by the director of the Pasteur Institute and M. 
Versin. They have succeeded in reproducing the disease in 
rabbits, fowls, pigeons, and guinea-pigs by inoculating these 
animals with cultured microbes. They have also been able 
to isolate the special product of fermentation caused by 
these microbes, and by using that, without the germ itself 
they have brought about all the symptoms of diphtheria, 
including the difficulty of respiration and paralysis of the 
muscles. They have further shown that a person -who is 
perfectly healthy may inhale these microbes with impunity, 
but that if there be any weakness of the mucous membrane 
of the throat the disease is speedily developed. This accounts 
for the security enjoyed by many people, and also for the 
frequency of the disease after attacks of cold, scarlet-fever, 
or measles. It points to the necessity for giving attention 
to sore throats or slight ailments when diphtheria is preva- 
lent, and to the necessity of frequently washing the mouth 
and throat with such an efficacious destroyer of microbes 
and micro-organisms as that which, in my hands and among 
thousands of my patients and correspondents, has not yet 

Irrigations such as those mentioned should be made with 
copious quantities of the fluid, a rule which my own experi- 
ence has taught me, and which is recognized by all who have 
used less powerful parasiticides than mine. The New York 
State Board of Health on one occasion recommended sul- 
phurous-acid gas the fumes of burning sulphur as a pre- 
ventative and disinfectant for diphtheria. But the special 
germ, the streptococcus diphtherialis, is not destroyed by that 
gas. It yields to three agents only carbolic acid, corrosive 
sublimate, and my microbe killer, and the first two of these 
are powerful poisons, and as dangerous to the patient as 
they are to the microbe. 

It is worthy of mention here that diphtheria is not con- 


fined to members of the human family. Animals are liable 
to it, and a case is mentioned where a kitten conveyed the 
disease to four members of one family before the truth be- 
came known and the animal could be killed. The symptoms 
in that instance were unusually virulent, but no deaths 
ensued. It is beyond doubt that the germ of diphtheria, 
like that of tubercle, may be conveyed through the atmos- 
phere, as, indeed, may the microbe of malarial or intermit- 
tent fever, and many others, hence the facility with which a 
child may take the disease from any pet animal. 

Most of the microbes or bacteria that are to be found in 
the atmosphere come from the ground, or from the breath, 
or sputa, or persons of individuals. Heavy rains tend to 
wash them out of the air, but, when thus thrown to the soil, 
the moisture favors their increase, and thus, as the ground 
dries, they may be carried back into the atmosphere in 
increased numbers. 

Something similar may be illustrated in another way. It 
has been shown by actual observation that the tubercle 
microbe exists in the perspiration of persons suffering from 
phthisis or consumption in any form, but they are not an 
exudation from the skin. They come from the sputum, 
possibly from the breath, and, being suspended in the air, 
they are carried to the limbs or the bedclothes of the patient, 
and thence to the surface of the body. 

It is an error, however, to suppose that the atmosphere is 
the principal nidus of the disease forms. Bacteria, microbes, 
and micro-organisms of all kinds exist in infinite numbers in 
the soil. Some observers consider that to be their chief 
breeding-place. All are not disease-producers, but all seem 
to exercise some useful function, and the most plausible 
suggestion yet made upon this is that, by inducing a process 
of fermentation in the soil, they bring about chemical 
decompositions which liberate elements that are necessary 
to the nutrition and development of higher forms of life. 

Among disease germs that are found in the soil, those of 
typhoid fever, malaria, and tetanus are most frequent, and 


hence it is that the breaking up of new land, especially in 
damp places, so frequently produces ague or " chills and 
fever " among local residents. It is a popular error to sup- 
pose, therefore, that the earth destroys microbes, and it 
seems to have arisen out of the fact that dry soil renders 
them for a time comparatively innocuous. 

It had long been supposed that tetanus or locked-jaw fol- 
lows as an injury to the nerves in certain wounds, although 
how it could so result was never explained. It is now 
acknowledged to be the work of a specific microbe, and it 
has been shown experimentally that the disease may be 
produced in animals by inpculation with the organism as it 
is found in the soil. In Cuba tetanus is very common. 
Statistics taken at Havana show that 82 per cent, of wounds 
of the lower extremities are followed by tetanic symptoms. 
It is a practice there among the country people to dress 
wounds with dry earth, and tetanus invariably follows. For 
a long while this fact remained unexplained, until a micro- 
scopic examination of the soil showed it to be particularly 
rich in the special microbe of that disease. 

The ground is the great resting- and breeding-place of 
micro-organisms of all kinds, whether they be harmless or 
capable of producing disease. It is easy to foresee, there- 
fore, how they can pass into the atmosphere, or on to the 
surface of bodies, and thus be spread everywhere. It be- 
comes apparent, also, how animals and plants may be alike 
affected by them, and how rapidly they multiply under 
favorable conditions, which may be briefly summarized as 
warmth, moisture, and usually a deficiency of light. 

If we cover up a pit of potatoes without the precaution of 
keeping down the temperature and moisture, fermentation 
sets in, and soon fungoid growths are everywhere percepti- 
ble, while the substance of the potato becomes diseased and 
rots. If the atmosphere of the greenhouse be kept too 
warm and moist, fungoid growths begin to show themselves 
directly, and in due time the plants become sick. Or again, 
the same circumstances arise if two or three weeks pass 




without the assistance of the sun's rays to purify the atmos- 
phere. Although this is well understood by persons who 
have charge of flowers, I can imagine an objection which 
those to whom the suggestions may be new would be likely 
to raise. For most people have read of, if they have not 
seen, the rank vegetation of the tropics, where, amid an 
abundance of heat and moisture, often with an absence of 
sunlight, the most luxuriant and healthful vegetation that 
the world knows, may be discovered. Or again, we may go 
into the deep woods in our own country, and there, in 
shaded nooks and corners, find specimens that are not to be 
found elsewhere, and which, notwithstanding their healthy 
appearance, will wither and die as soon as they are trans- 
ferred to the garden bed. 

How is this? In the first place, certain germs must, as I 
have already shown, have certain suitable conditions in 
which to increase and flourish, and although they may be 
produced in abundance in such locations as those described, 
yet the plants that grow in the same spots are proof against 
them, they are not suited to their development, and, in fact, 
they grow in spite of them. That germs are produced in 
such places, every victim of malaria can testify. 

But this calls for another observation. Plants are adapted 
to the conditions that surround them, and conversely the 
climate of any locality has vegetable growth adapted to it. 
High latitudes and high elevations in low latitudes are the 
homes of the pines and firs, while more temperate regions 
give us the olive and the oak, and in the tropics the palms 
and all the grandest development of endogenous vegetation 
most abound. This is nothing more nor less than a law 
arising out of the circumstances attending the formation of 
the earth itself ; nevertheless, it is everywhere evident that 
Nature leaves nothing unoccupied, so that when the con- 
ditions are such that one form of life cannot continue, we 
find another especially adapted to it. 

These, however, are exceptions in the vegetable world ; 
but similar exceptions are to be found in the animal creation. 


Life that flourishes in the tropics would perish in Labrador, 
and the seal of Alaska would soon disappear if removed to 
the waters of the Amazon. Animal life is also to be met 
with under exactly the same conditions as those in which 
we find the flowers that grow apart from light and air in the 
dim recesses of the woods. But this only proves the rule. 
The highest and most complete forms of vegetation exist 
only under the requirements given, and man, as the highest 
form of animal life, requires the same. Like the oak and the 
elm, he needs light, air, and a more or less equable tempera- 
ture. He does not flourish where the mushroom and the 
snail are most at home. The gas that kills a rose will 
destroy an animal. You may drown the one almost as 
readily as the other. Both succumb alike to poisonous 
compounds. Both are subject to disease, and very often 
are alike affected by the same causes. Hence the relevancy 
of studying Nature in all her varied forms, if we would 
come to a correct understanding of the conditions of life 
and disease. 

It is advisable, even, not to be content with a comprehen- 
sion of the organic world alone, if we would fully appreciate 
how much there is to learn outside of it, and how thoroughly 
all bears down upon the same conclusion change is univer- 
sal. The rocks, even the mountains, are wasting away, 
slowly, it is true, but none the less surely, under influences 
that are unceasing. Among them, light, air, and moisture 
fill a prominent part, but minute, invisible growth is a pow- 
erful aid likewise. The disintegration of the solid rock is 
influenced largely by the growth, in the first instance, of 
minute fungi, and afterwards upon their remains by structures 
of a higher organization as lichens and allied plants ; and 
where there is a crevice or a crack in a rock, even a disruption 
may in time be produced by vegetable formation. 

The indications in such instances are to discover a means 
by which the growth may be prevented, or if that fail, then 
a means by which it can be killed. In business this is con- 
stantly being attended to. Shippers of fruit, for example, 


pack their produce as dry as possible and keep down the 
temperature, so preventing the formation of fungi and the 
process of fermentation. Ice is oftentimes used for this 
purpose. Florists, too, when shipping plants in the warm 
season are careful to secure ventilation by means of holes in 
their packages, or in cold weather to line them with some 
material capable of absorbing moisture. Without such pre- 
cautions it would be a hazardous business to send fruits 
from California or the extreme South to New York, but 
with them even the most delicate produce of warm cli- 
mates can be transported with safety and advantage, as 
the condition of grapes of St. Angeles, as seen in New 
York, sufficiently testifies. In the same manner the produce 
of the West Indies is safely carried to the markets of 
London and Paris. 

A great deal has been said about the disintegration of 
the Egyptian obelisk in Central Park. It was well known 
by people who understood such things that that would be 
the inevitable result of transferring the monument to this 
climate, which on account of the great variations between 
extremes of heat and cold in summer and winter respec- 
tively is very detrimental. It is true that the means taken 
to prevent destruction were well calculated to bring it about, 
submitting the stone to high degrees of temperature being 
about the worst course that could be pursued. It should, 
therefore, be no surprise to find that the surface of the 
stone is falling away, although the finer monuments, one in 
Paris, the other in London, are well preserved. But inde- 
pendently of the injury which has resulted from the display 
of so much ignorance, it is certain that fungoid growths 
have done their work, and that to this cause very much of 
the trouble is due. A damp season gives ample illustration 
of the rapidity of these formations in New York, where a 
green fungus, the protococcus viridis, forms abundantly on 
the brown sandstone, of which so many of the houses are 
constructed. It is more rare to find this on marble or lime- 
stone, where the absorption of moisture is more difficult. 


If we examine a piece of lumber that has been lying for 
some time under the influence of air and moisture, and 
especially if the sunlight has been limited, fungoid growths 
may be seen upon the surface, and the practical problem 
put before us is how to get rid of them, and so to preserve 
the timber from destruction. Let any textile fabric, a man's 
coat or a woman's gown, get wet and be put away in that 
condition in a close closet. In a very short time fungoid 
matter can be detected by the musty smell that is given off, 
even though it may not be perceptible to the unaided 
eye. Leave the clothes in .these conditions for a short time 
and they rot and fall to pieces. In each of these illustra- 
tions the fungi are different ; and our purpose is not so 
much to know how they would be classified by the biologist, 
as it is to learn the means by which to get rid of them. It 
is the same throughout. It would be easy to enumerate 
hundreds, aye thousands, of similar examples, and in every 
one the cause is the same ; the proofs being so marked and 
so unanswerable that none but a person who is wilfully 
ignorant, or who is blinded by prejudice, could possibly 
question them. 

The special study of microbes as a branch of biological 
science is full of interest and value, but it is not material to 
a practical application of remedial agents in the treatment 
of disease. It is well to identify the special microbes of 
typhoid and tetanus in the ground, but when it comes to 
treating either of those diseases, it is of no moment that two 
specific germs are there. It suffices to destroy them, and 
one treatment will do that. Thus then it is not necessary 
to my present purpose to classify the microbes that are met 
with, and it is only as indicating the progress of the study 
that I refer to that. My object is rather to point out the 
all-important part they take in the causation of disease, and 
to make known the means by which they may be destroyed, 
and prevented from increasing, that thus the substance in 
which they are found may be preserved. In subsequent 
chapters I shall show how this is done by myself and 
attempted by others. 





A PERUSAL of the preceding pages will have suggested a 
question which it is time that I consider. Assuming the 
force of the undoubted facts that have been given, how 
does sickness begin ? What causes illness in the animal 
frame ? 

I have hinted at this, but only briefly and incidentally, 
and it is necessary now to review the subject more in detail. 
Microbes may be taken into the system in various ways. 
They may come to us not only by the lungs from the atmos- 
phere, but with the water that we drink, the food that we 
eat ; or again by contact with other bodies, and also by 
inoculation when there is any abrasion of the surface of the 
skin. Water that is ordinarily used for drinking purposes 
always contains them. The water of rivers, lakes, arid pools 
is full of them. Rain-water, collected as it falls in perfectly 
clean vessels, is found to contain them, sometimes in very- 
large quantities. In this case they have been gathered from 
the atmosphere. Spring-water, at the moment that it issues 
from the ground, is the purest in this particular, but water 
immediately after distillation is alone free from them. I say 
immediately, for if distilled water be allowed to stand for 
only a short time exposed to the atmosphere, an examina- 
tion with the microscope readily shows that microbes have 
begun to collect in it. Mineral waters are not free from 
them, and sea-water contains them in wondrous abundance. 
Filtering does not suffice to purify water from these minute 



organisms. I have already stated the measurement of some 
of them as about one sixth the diameter of a blood corpus- 
cle, but others are too minute for any estimate to be formed, 
actual measurement being out of the question. They are 
quite able to pass through any filtering medium with which 
we are acquainted, not even excepting porous stone. 

The minuteness of such bodies is wellnigh inconceivable. 
An idea of it can best be formed by stating what is the 
power of a good microscope. It has been found possible 
to rule lines upon glass which are a ninety-thousandth of 
an inch apart. And an accurate and experienced observer 
is capable of distinguishing objects that are the one-hundred- 
thousandth of an inch in diameter. Microbes of this dimen- 
sion would be so small that ten thousand millions would be 
required to cover a square inch of surface. Microscopes can 
be made of much greater power than this, but Sir John Lub- 
bock is of opinion that, by the very nature of light, investi- 
gations of greater minuteness become uncertain and untrust- 
worthy. In this view he is sustained by Sir Henry Roscoe ; 
but skilled microscopists are also to be found, and among 
them is Dr. Dallinger, the President of the Royal Micro- 
scopical Society, who fix the limit of vision at the five-hun- 
dred-thousandth of an inch, which gives us the enormous 
multitude of two hundred and fifty thousand millions of 
these little creatures on an inch of surface. Nor may we 
stop here, for it is beyond doubt that there are yet others 
smaller, so small as to defy all the powers which man can 
bring to define them. It will readily be understood, there- 
fore, why no process of filtration that is known to us will 
suffice to render water absolutely free from them, and the 
only remedy at our command implies then their destruction. 

I have already given, when speaking of disease, an explana- 
tion of the reason why unpleasant consequences do not 
always follow from taking microbes into the system, as we 
certainly do whenever we drink water. It is because the 
particular form of microbe may be harmless, or because the 
conditions surrounding it in the system are not such as are 


adapted to its increase. They are then either harmless or 
they perish and pass away. But where water is very foul 
the quantity of living organic matter is increased, and the 
chances of being able to resist them are diminished. The 
disease then ensues and may become epidemic which is 
produced by that particular microbe which is most abundant 
in the water. 

A few years ago a manufacturing town in New England 
suffered for nearly a year from an epidemic of typhoid fever 
and diphtheria. The latter was severe, nine tenths of the 
children in a particular locality being affected by it. But it 
was limited to a district that could readily be defined. In- 
side of the line few children escaped, outside of it none were 
afflicted. After careful investigation it was discovered that 
the families that lived where the disease prevailed all ob- 
tained their water from the same source, and microscopical 
examination showed that it was filled with organic matter 
and with microbes of a peculiar form. 

By a strange coincidence, typhoid fever of a remarkably 
virulent type prevailed at the same time in the same town, 
but on the opposite side of it, and more than a mile from 
the diphtheritic district. This, too, was confined to a small 
settlement of about fifty families, but every one of them was 
attacked. These people got their water from a spring that 
flowed from a hillside, and for a long time it was not sus- 
pected. It looked clear and sparkling and was pleasant to 
drink. As a last resource it was submitted to examination, 
and to the surprise of everybody it was found to contain 
microbes and much organic matter. The use of it was given 
up and the fever ceased. Pursuing the inquiry further it 
was afterwards discovered that this water, apparently pure 
and from so unsuspected a source, actually percolated through 
ground that had become impure from causes attending the 
construction of some houses a year before on the high ground 
above where the water made its exit from the earth. 

In this connection it is well to repeat that the micro- 
organism of diphtheria has been certainly isolated and 


cultivated. It was at one time thought to be a form that 
had been described by Loeffler, but more recent investiga- 
tions show that it is a different variety, and that it is usually 
accompanied by others which appear to be found also in 
different diseased conditions. It is about one micromilli- 
metre in length, and they tend to form chains as they grow. 
When the cultivated microbes were injected into other 
animals, as rabbits, pigeons, and hens, they always produced 
disease, sometimes with suppuration, and it is a curious fact 
that at present no distinction has been found between the 
microbe of diphtheria and those found in inflamed wounds 
and erysipelas. It may yet be discovered, although phleg- 
monous inflammation and erysipelas are so closely connected 
that it is more than probable that the micro-organisms in 
both are identical. 

The vitality of these bodies is very great. They are not 
killed by drying even at a high temperature, and even the 
vapor of burning sulphur cannot be relied on to kill them. 

In the case above mentioned, it became evident that 
filtration through the earth of impure water does not neces- 
sarily purify it. It has, however, been proved that if it be 
sufficient to remove the bacteria, the water, although other- 
wise apparently impure, does not produce disease. Within 
the last few months the students at Yale College have been 
suffering from an epidemic of typhoid fever which in some 
instances assumed a virulent type. When it became so bad 
as to excite attention outside of New Haven, it was admitted 
that typhoid disease is almost endemic there, that in fact it 
is always more or less prevalent, although the truth has 
hitherto been carefully concealed. On investigation it 
became known that the system of cesspools is commonly 
followed throughout the town, that bad plumbing is every- 
where to be found, that very little attention is paid to 
sanitary engineering, "and that most of the buildings, espe- 
cially those of the College, are damp, musty, and in the 
basements covered with vegetable microbes and mildew. 
Yet in spite of all this evidence of the true origin of the 


disease, scientific men in New Haven insist on saying that 
the fever was brought into the place from outside sources. 
In truth it was carried by negligence, by wilfully overlooking 
causes that were every day before the eyes of every observer, 
and they whose duty it is to guard the welfare of the stu- 
dents, and who from ignorance or perversity omitted to take 
the necessary precautions, were responsible for whatever 
disease and death ensued. 

Records show, as might be expected, that mortality in that 
College has hitherto increased year by year. The cultiva- 
tion of the micro-organisms goes on, and as they increase so 
their work extends. Thus in 1883, there were twenty deaths 
from typhoid in New Haven. In 1886, the number of 
deaths was fifty per cent, more than in 1885, and 125 per 
cent, more than what it had been a few years previously. 
In 1888 no less than eight cases occurred in one house, and 
in five months in 1889 there were 104 cases and 24 deaths ! 
The general condition of health among the students at Yale 
is acknowledged to be not good, and it is worst among those 
students whose rooms are so situated that sunlight and free 
ventilation cannot be obtained. Diseases of the throat and 
lungs, besides malarial and typhoid fevers, are most preva- 
lent, but there is no affection which may not be brought 
about by such causes as there exist. 

The popular idea which is at variance with this is in error. 
Take, for example, pneumonia, which, because it is most 
frequent in certain conditions of the atmosphere, people are 
apt to attribute to that cause. There is now no longer any 
room for doubt that this, instead of being as was once sup- 
posed a mere inflammation of the tissues of the lungs, is a 
specific infectious disease. Wherever it exists there is a 
microbe, or micro-organism, in the lungs. This is so certain 
that it was classified and named Micrococcus Pasteuri, after 
the distinguished French experimenter. 

The influenza epidemic afforded opportunity for examin- 
ing various forms of bacteria, and Dr. T. M. Prudden fur- 
nished some interesting notes of observation on the subject. 


Where it was complicated with bronchitis he found the 
microbe known as Streptococcus pyogenes always prevalent, 
but other forms were observable, notably Diplococcus pneu- 
monice of Fraenkel, and Staphyloc occus pyogenes aureus. This 
last is common in cases of common cold in the head. Where 
pneumonia was the principal concomitant of the epidemic 
the Diplococcus was most abundant, and it was fully identi- 
fied both by culture and animal inoculation. The Diplococ- 
cus is almost always found in the saliva of healthy persons, 
but this, as Dr. Prudden observed, does not militate against 
its etiological importance, but furnishes a most satisfactory 
rationale of the occurrence of the disease. Under ordinary 
circumstances it is harmless. " It is only when the suitable 
predisposing conditions which we recognize in injuries and 
in exposure to cold and wet, but which in many cases we do 
not understand at all are fulfilled, that the growth of the 
microbe in the lungs and its accompanying lesions can occur. 

If passed into the blood of tender animals, such as rabbits 
or mice, it produces blood-poisoning and death. In less sus- 
ceptible animals, such as dogs and sheep, it produces all the 
symptoms of pneumonia, or, more correctly, pneumonic 
fever. This particular microbe acts upon the lung tissues, 
just as that of typhoid fever attacks Peyer's patches in the 
intestines, and that of malaria enters the blood ; but sudden 
changes of temperature bring about the conditions most 
favorable to its growth. 

In one section of the work on the Croton Aqueduct pneu- 
monia was for some time extremely troublesome. Most of 
the workmen were attacked and several died. The disease 
resisted all efforts on the part of the physicians, who failed 
to lay stress upon the circumstance that, where it was worst, 
the rooms were badly ventilated and dark, as well as damp. 
At last it occurred to somebody to clean out the place, to 
have the walls and ceilings limewashed, to purify the bed- 
ding and clothes of the men, and generally to take measures 
customary in cases of fever, and from that time there were 
no more patients suffering from " pneumonia." 

-I-, Q 







To the casual reader there may seem some features that 
are obscure in this subject, and which it may be well to ex- 
plain before proceeding further. The danger of infection 
through the atmosphere is probably exaggerated in some 
directions. Some microbes, like that of malaria, for instance, 
are more active in this way than others. The cholera germ 
is more readily destroyed by desiccation, so that, taking 
these two instances only, it will be seen that a healthy person 
may be much more readily affected with intermittent fever 
than with cholera, assuming that he is placed in circum- 
stances apparently favorable to both. But again, a disease 
germ that shall be harmless when taken into the lungs may 
enter the stomach by having first been deposited in the food. 
There it may find conditions congenial to it, where it may 
multiply, and thus disease will ensue, the activity of the 
organism depending solely on the conditions surrounding it. 
A more marked illustration of this is presented by the pro- 
cess attending the healing of wounds. The atmosphere of a 
room may apparently be perfectly healthy, that is to say, a 
person may live in it without fear or liability to infection, or 
without the chance of incurring disease as a consequence of 
taking microbes into the system by food ; and yet if he be 
suffering from a wound, there may be sufficient micro-organ- 
isms in the air to produce suppuration and prevent a healthful 
and rapid healing. From all of which it must be apparent 
that in forming an estimate of the danger or activity of dis- 
ease germs various things have to be taken into considera- 
tion, especially in regard to the nature of the microbe, the 
manner in which it is received, the nidus where it rests, and 
the proneness or otherwise of the person at the time to be 
affected. A man in vigorous health, who lives regularly 
and is a slave to no bad habits, being often well able to 
withstand an attack which would speedily invalidate or even 
be fatal to one less able to resist the action of the germ. 

I have mentioned incidentally that in malarial fever the 
microbe does its work by directly entering the blood, and 
thus affects not any special tissue or location as in diphtheria, 


typhoid fever, or pneumonia, but the entire system, produ- 
cing the effects which are so well known in this country, as 
ague or chills and fever, intermittent fever or Febris recur- 
rens. The parasite in this instance has been identified. It 
often attains to a considerable size, varying from two to 
twenty diameters of a blood corpuscle. It is a dark body, 
containing a multitude of dark, round, movable granules and 
a large nucleus. The cells divide, and one may then be seen 
to attach itself to a blood corpuscle, with which it seems to 
unite and to grow again into another of the large bodies first 
mentioned. This shows that in malaria the parasite is not 
only in the blood, circulating with it throughout the tissues, 
but that it actually eats up, as it were, the corpuscles them- 
selves, thus destroying the life-giving energies of the fluid. 
It has long been known that healthy blood contains para- 
sites ; it is only when it contains others which are injurious 
that any evil results ensue. 

Microbes are taken into the system in vast numbers with 
food. I have examined old canned goods, for example, and 
sausage meat, using a one-eighth inch homogeneous objective 
and C eye-piece. Microbes can be detected at once, not in 
isolated spots, but in millions, and I have kept them alive in 
glass bottles in a suitable medium for six months with- 
out any apparent loss of their vitality. It is well known 
that instances of disease being produced by eating stale 
canned meats are not uncommon ; they are, in fact, very 
common, and physicians always describe them as cases of 
blood poisoning, but they never acknowledge, if they know 
it, what the nature of the poison is. Death frequently 
ensues. The real cause is nothing more nor less than the 
microbes which, forming in the meat as a result of a chemical 
change, are taken into the blood through the stomach. 

Vegetables in a state of fermentation also produce disease 
germs, but they are not as dangerous as those which are 
generated in the animal tissues. Nevertheless, even they 
sometimes give rise to diseases of the bowels or some 
portion of the alimentary canal, and for that reason Boards 

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of Health should forbid the sale of fruits or vegetables that 
are in a state of fermentation. Ripe fruit is rarely injurious. 
To a healthy person it is perhaps never harmful, but much 
of the diarrhoea and so-called cholera, although it is not 
cholera, that prevails among children, especially in the sum- 
mer season, may often be attributed to the use of over-ripe 
fruit, fruit in which a process of fermentation has begun. 
Some kinds of dried fruits are found likewise to be the seat 
of various forms of microbes, and experiment has shown 
that except at a high temperature their vitality is not 
destroyed ; yet it does not appear that any of these have 
been identified as disease germs, although the subject 
presents room for further investigation. 

From this it will be gleaned that disease germs may be 
taken into the system by food in two ways. They may be 
inherent in the food itself, or they may have become con- 
veyed to it from the atmosphere or from contact with other 
substances. The process of cooking has a sterilizing effect. 
It tends to destroy germs ; hence we find, as might be ex- 
pected, that disturbance is most frequent when raw meats 
are used, as they are very largely by some people, and where 
uncooked fruits and vegetables constitute a chief article of 
diet. Instances are recorded where several persons have 
partaken of the same food, and only one or two have suf- 
fered. This may be explained on the theory of superior 
resistance above mentioned, but also by the fact that certain 
microbes appear to increase in colonies, so to speak, whereby 
one portion of meat may be free from them while another 
portion is largely supplied with them. In liquids, such as 
milk, they are of course more generally diffused, and one 
portion then is as injurious as another. 

Micro-organisms capable of producing disease may come 
to us in meat without any communication from outside 
sources, and this is where the public is at the mercy of sani- 
tary inspectors. Just as tubercle may be conveyed from an 
unhealthy cow through the milk to a child, so disease germs 
may come direct from the tissues of a diseased animal, be 


taken into the human system, and there propagate and renew 
the original affection or one allied to it. 

In an important paper read before the London Pathologi- 
cal Society it has been shown that tubercle of the udder is 
very frequent among cows which are in other respects 
healthy. The milk is then full of microbes and highly 
infectious, and it is well ascertained that such milk is the 
cause of choleraic diarrhoea and consumption of the bowels 
in children. Some breeds of cows are more subject to 
tubercle than others, and they are usually those with large 
udders and which yield a copious supply of milk, conse- 
quently being most sought after by milk dealers. A remedy 
is at hand in boiling. Milk should be cooked as meat is, and 
for those who profess not to like boiled milk, a little sugar 
or salt added to it, as may be preferred, will be found to very 
much improve the flavor. 

It can be well understood from this that a child may 
acquire disease from a wet nurse. A case has been recently 
recorded where a perfectly healthy child, born of healthy 
parents, was given to a woman to be suckled. Unknown to 
the parents, the wet nurse had tuberculous tendencies, and 
in a very short time the infant contracted tubercular menin- 
gitis and died. On examination the nurse's milk was found 
to contain tubercle bacilli, but the discovery was made too 
late. Other diseases, as well as hereditary taints, are liable 
to be conveyed from wet nurses to children. 

When cows' milk is used for infants, it should not only be 
boiled, but boiled thoroughly that is, kept at the necessary 
temperature for several minutes at least. The custom too 
prevalent in America of eating meat underdone or " blood 
rare," as its advocates delight to describe it, is bad also and in 
all likelihood dangerous. Every form of animal food should 
be completely cooked. 

Thus then either through the air we breathe, or the food 
we eat, or the water that we drink, disease-producing 
microbes may be taken into the system. There yet remains 
another means that of inoculation. I have found by 


actual experiment that if the sap of a diseased plant be 
removed to a healthy plant, the disease goes with it. The 
second plant soon falls into a condition resembling that 
of the first, and the same symptoms are repeated. So 
it is with man. The blood of a sick person injected into the 
veins of one in health, reproduces the disease through the 
bacteria that go along with it. The bite of a dog suffering 
from hydrophobia becomes dangerous to man by reason of 
the microbes that are carried into the system through the 
saliva. The time that is required before their presence is 
observable varies, but it may be years. All depends upon 
the suitability of their surroundings for proper development. 
But in time, unless checked by some means, the blood 
becomes saturated with them, and death after much suffer- 
ing ensues inevitably. The doctrine that hydrophobia is 
merely blood poisoning is simply absurd ; at any rate it 
is quite untenable in view of facts now known to us. There 
is no danger in the bite of a dog when his saliva is free from 
microbes, and this accounts for the circumstance that hun- 
dreds and thousands of persons are bitten by dogs every year 
and without experiencing any ill effects. It is true that death 
may ensue from the scratch inflicted by an old nail, or in 
many similar ways, but in all such cases microbes had been 
introduced into the system. Where injuries are received 
and no serious results follow, it is simply because bacteria 
have been kept out of the blood, and the truth of this is so 
fully recognized, that now surgeons adopt every means 
known to them to prevent the inoculation of wounds in 
operations by any thing of the kind. If a person be pricked 
with a needle that had previously been passed into the 
tissues of a person afflicted with leprosy, the disease will be 
conveyed to him, through the microbes that remain upon 
the instrument. I have handled these microbes, preserved 
them in suitable media in bottles, observed their develop- 
ment day by day under the microscope, watched their 
action, seen the fermentation in the blood caused by their 
presence, and finally have observed the gradual decomposi- 


tion and destruction of the fluid itself. It cannot be 
doubted that if anybody with an abrasion of the skin comes 
in contact with a leper, he will have the germs of the disease 
conveyed to him. Leprosy may not and probably would 
not develop immediately, but sooner or later it would 
certainly come. 

A paper was read at the Dermatological Congress at 
Prague last year describing the inoculation of a condemned 
criminal at Honolulu with leprosy. Briefly the case was 
this. An apparently healthy, vigorous man, without any 
hereditary taint, was in September, 1884, inoculated with 
lepra material, which had been taken directly from a child 
who was the subject of leprosy, and who had passed through 
an attack of leprous fever. A small piece of matter was 
inserted in the left forearm. Four weeks afterward pains 
like those of rheumatism were experienced first in the left 
shoulder, then in other joints of the left arm, but without 
fever. During the next six months inflammation of the 
nerves abated and small leprous nodules began to appear 
near the site of inoculation. At the end of sixteen months, 
leprous bacilli were present in large numbers. In 1887 tne 
symptoms had become general, and in 1888, four years after 
inoculation, the patient was the subject of fully developed 

Every disease may be conveyed in this way, both in plants 
and animals. The familiar operation of vaccination is nothing 
more than the conveyance into the system of microbes 
pertaining to a mild form of small-pox. And the methods 
pursued by Professor Pasteur are identical, only he transfers 
the microbe peculiar to hydrophobia. From what has been 
already said it will be understood that many alleged cures 
that are put to the credit of M. Pasteur are no cures at all, 
because if no microbes had been taken into the wound no 
evil consequences could ensue, and consequently the pa- 
tient would have had no trouble, even though he had done 

Readers of the daily papers probably noticed recently 


how a little village in Massachusetts had been worked into 
a state of unwonted excitement by a minister of one of its 
churches trying to suppress the kissing games at sociables 
and society meetings. He did this under some sort of 
sense, apparently peculiar to himself, that kissing is im- 
moral. Honi soit qui mal y pense, and I fear that that 
worthy pastor must at times have had evil thoughts. If he 
had objected to kissing on scientific grounds he would have 
been less severely criticized probably, for certain it is that 
disease may be conveyed in that way. Microbes have been 
found in the saliva of healthy persons, and sometimes they 
are unmistakable disease germs. It would appear that they 
do not evince their presence as long as the person is in good 
health, or unless there is any injury or abrasion of the 
mucous membrane. But those conditions being present 
they are apt to produce suppurative inflammations extend- 
ing from the lips down to the pharynx or larger air-passages. 
The presence in moderate numbers of a peculiar microbe, 
which has much the character of a fungus may be normal, 
but if it increases largely in numbers it sets up inflammatory 
action as a sequel to fermentation, and disease of the glands 
and throat is the consequence. A patient suffering from 
this may convey the disease to any one by being kissed on 
the lips. It is generally known that a severe cold in the 
head or coryza may be transmitted in like manner, and in 
common with tonsillitis, quinsy, sore throat, and other local 
ailments, be the price paid for this brief indulgence. The 
Princess Alice, second daughter of the Queen of England 
and aunt to the Emperor of Germany, who died in 1878, 
incurred the disease which proved fatal to her through a kiss. 
There is an apparently slight affection of the nipple of the 
human breast which sometimes develops into cancer. It is 
sometimes hardly perceptible, or only showing itself as a 
slight irritation or roughness of the skin. Various theories 
were for many years put forth to account for it, and to 
make clear its true nature. But if some of the small scales 
of the skin of the part are removed and placed on the field 


of the microscope and treated with a little bichromate of 
ammonia, microbes at once become apparent. They are 
small, round bodies, nearly the same size as that of the 
epithelial cells, and consist of an outer membranous cover- 
ing containing a number of small corpuscular bodies. In 
incipient cancer similar parasites may also be discovered. 
Operations for this terrible disease fail because microbes are 
not entirely removed. If only two or three are left behind 
in apparently healthy tissues they increase, and the disease 
will assuredly return. 

In the summer diarrhoea of children microbes are always 
present, and they are of various forms, but if they in any 
way get upon an injury to the skin they produce the same 
disease. Injected into the veins of animals they cause 
drowsiness, stupor, convulsions, and death. 

I ought not to omit all mention of yet another possible 
means by which disease may be transferred by microbes, and 
in which infective diseases could become hereditary. A vast 
number of experiments has been made in Europe to test 
the value of this theory. In one instance a young woman 
became a mother while in the most critical stage of typhoid 
fever. The child died in a few hours, and when examined 
typhoid microbes were found in some of its organs and 

A case has also been reported from a town in Iowa where 
a young German woman, while suffering from a severe 
attack of measles, was delivered of a female child before the 
eighth month of pregnancy, and the infant at its birth was 
covered with the same eruption. It survived only two 

This would seem to prove that such organisms are con- 
veyable from mother to child, but most experiments have 
gone to weigh down a negative proposition. They have, 
however, been confined to a class of complaints where the 
microbe is acknowledged to take the prominent place in 
causation. It is certain that syphilis, for example, may be 
transmitted from parent to child, and this is only one of 


many that might be cited. It is quite distinct from 
mere hereditary tendency to disease, which is also fully 

The conveyance of disease germs to children by means of 
milk comes, in one sense, under the head already given of 
the imbibition of microbes with food, but there is a distinc- 
tion. A person taking typhoid fever through using impure 
water is impregnating himself with microbes from a third 
source, but in the case of the infant it is taking the evil 
directly from another animal. I know of no article of food 
that is better adapted than milk to preserve and convey 
bacteria. The germs of cholera have been found in milk 
after standing for six days, and they have, under favorable 
circumstances, shown activity at the end of a month. In 
cheese they do not retain their vitality more than twenty- 
four hours. The bacilli of typhoid will remain active in 
milk for thirty-five days, in butter for about three weeks, 
but only for two days in cheese, and less than twenty-four 
hours in whey. Tubercle microbes are capable of develop- 
ment in milk after ten days, but in butter they retain their 
full power for four weeks, and they will live for two weeks 
even in whey and cheese. ' Many remain full of activity for 
a considerable time in water. Some interesting experiments 
made and frequently repeated in Europe prove that the 
microbes of typhoid fever will remain alive in pure water for 
periods varying from 20 to 80 days ; that of cholera from 16 
to 40 days ; of tubercle from 20 to 118 days ; of glanders 57 
days ; and that found in pus from a healing wound as long 
as 73 days. Some germs are capable of increase in distilled 

In the course of my experiments I once left a glass slide 
with a few drops of water on it over night on my table, and 
on examining it the next morning with a powerful objec- 
tive, I had certain evidence of the impure state of the air of 
my room. I have often repeated that observation, and to 
my surprise I have always been able to detect the presence 
of microbes. If they were all disease germs, we could not 


live a month ; but many of them, indeed, the majority, are 

I noticed in San Francisco that the dew that rests on 
vegetation there in early morning often contained a small 
globular reddish-colored microbe, but it was quite harmless. 
There is a microbe in beer that is likewise innocuous, but 
which, like the yeast plant, has its uses. 

These facts are of more importance than they perhaps 
appear at first sight. In a sick room the air is more or less 
permeated with disease germs. This is especially true in 
the instances mentioned cholera, typhoid fever, and con- 
sumption. Now, if in such a room an open vessel contain- 
ing milk, or a plate of butter, let me say, be left about, it is 
certain of contamination. Food of the kind so affected 
should not be used therefore. Yet how often do we see 
this important point neglected. I may illustrate the same 
thing in possibly a more marked manner. Suppose a 
healthy person to be sleeping in a close apartment. If 
a bowl of water be placed on a table and left through the 
night, it will be found on careful examination in the morn- 
ing to be full of impurities, and to contain micro-organisms 
which were not present the night before. The larger the 
exposed surface of water the greater would be the quantity 
of foreign matter. It is not a bad plan, as may be judged 
from this, to keep such a bowl of water throughout the 
night in every occupied bedroom. ' It tends to purify the 



IT is a remarkable fact in Nature that while disease germs 
and consequently disease may be conveyed by inoculation, 
the same process is used to prevent disease, or, more cor- 
rectly speaking, to mollify it. Small-pox has been relieved 
of much of its terror by vaccination, the principle appar- 
ently being that a mild form of certain affections renders 
the system less liable to a severe attack of the same. It is 
on this that the disturbance caused by vaccine virus protects 
from small-pox, and M. Pasteur follows it up when he in- 
oculates for hydrophobia. 

The rationale of the process is not understood. M. Pas- 
teur has formulated a theory, but nothing more. He thinks 
that the white blood corpuscles are concerned in it. He 
supposes that the virus developed by fermentation, due to 
the presence of microbes, first attacks those corpuscles 
whose activity is thereby soon arrested. The microbe 
continues to develop, and the disease proportionally ad- 
vances. But where the system has been influenced by 
previous injections of attenuated virus the white corpuscles 
have got accustomed to the action of the microbes, and 
thus their activity is undiminished, and they are able to 
overcome the action of the parasites. But this, after all, is 
but a little circumlocution. It merely states a simple fact 
in more words, and it is as well to acknowledge at once that 
we do not know precisely what the process is. 

This much, however, we do know : that it is constantly 
being acted upon by Nature. Nothing is more common in 



plant life than the prevention of development of one form 
by another. Some of those which we term weeds are 
incapable of flourishing in the presence of others, and 
farmers know and take advantage of this when they plant 
a crop that grows exuberantly for the purpose of getting 
rid of troublesome weeds. The two processes may not be 
precisely the same, but in principle they are, when the soil 
is by artificial process rendered unfavorable to the develop- 
ment of a particular growth. It has been proposed to 
check the inroads of yellow-fever by similar means, but 
whether this is an advance in medical science is not clear. 
Many experiments to discover the microbe of yellow-fever 
have been illusive, especially a series conducted at Washing- 
ton and Baltimore. It is doubtful whether the cases sub- 
mitted for inquiry were genuine yellow-fever, and next 
whether the microbes found in the tissues examined had 
any thing to do with the disease. Nevertheless, Dr. Gibier, 
of Paris, thinks that yellow-fever may be prevented, or at 
least palliated, by inoculation. The identification of the 
"special microbe is not an element in the question. The 
microbe of hydrophobia has not been isolated, but no one 
doubts its existence. In some countries hydrophobia does 
not exist. It has never been heard of in Australia, or 
in some parts of northern Europe, and never will be unless 
it be conveyed to those places. M. Pasteur says unhesi- 
tatingly that the so-called virus of the disease is a microbe, 
and that rabies is certainly not of spontaneous origin ; but 
he believes that all virulent microbes may be attenuated 
and made useful for inoculation against the severe forms of 
the disease. 

My own experience has led me to the conclusion, which I 
put forward without any doubt as to its accuracy, that in 
all cases of disease, whether in plant or in animal, there is 
some form of micro-organism connected with it, and that 
this will increase and propagate itself, and that, too, when it 
is transferred to a healthy organization of the same kind. 
If I take seed from an unhealthy, sickly, yellowish-looking 





plant and sow it, and if it germinates, unhealthy, sickly and 
yellowish-looking plants will be the result. The germs of 
disease were there. " Rust," which is common on oats and 
some other cereals, is nothing more than a fungus and 
disease germ. Farmers recognize this, and they call for 
rust-proof seed. That does not imply that the plants 
grown from such seed are not subject to disease, but it 
does mean that the germs are not already in the seed. It 
means that the seed is healthy, that it came from healthy 
plants, and that it contains no microbes, fungi, or micro- 
organisms. Acting upon similar knowledge, he plants only 
healthy potatoes, he breeds his sheep, cattle, and horses 
only from healthy stock, and, in short, in all his farming 
operations he avoids, as far as possible, contact with disease 
in any and every form. In doing this he is simply avoiding 
the transfer of disease germs or microbes. 

The same thing occurs in the human race. It may not 
be going too far to call it a law of Nature, that diseased 
parents have diseased offspring, in which case the children 
have inherited a constitution which favors the growth of 
the same microbes, or they have received from their 
mother's organization the actual germs which develop into 
the more active micro-organisms. A florist takes his cut- 
tings only from healthy plants, because he well knows that 
if he did not, either the cuttings would perish through lack 
of vitality, or they would produce diseased plants like those 
from which they were derived, and his trouble and care in 
raising them must be increased. Moreover, he perpetuates 
a disease by neglecting this precaution, and it may be con- 
veyed to others, whereas his first consideration necessarily 
is to have all his floral family as free as possible from every 
deteriorating influence. I have frequently noticed that 
when rose cuttings are touched with even the smallest 
particle of black rust or other fungus, they are certain 
to cause trouble, the rapidity with which the disease is 
spread being very remarkable, and it is difficult to stop it, 
still less to eradicate it. The same applies to the animal 



world, with only this distinction, as a rule, that plants suffer 
from fungi peculiar to plants, while animals perish from 
microbes peculiar to animals. In the many instances al- 
ready adverted to, as, for example, in affections of the 
alimentary canal, where disease is caused by the imbibition 
of unwholesome fruit or vegetables, a process of fermenta- 
tion is first set up which causes the generation of microbes 
peculiar to the organization, which in turn produce a special 
abnormal condition. 

I do not suppose that advice to people who have already 
made up their minds to marry will be likely to be followed. 
The temporary madness which carries young men and women 
into the bonds of matrimony places them, for a time, out- 
side all influence of reason. They know not what they are 
doing. They are being carried away by a superhuman in- 
fatuation, and they have neither the time nor the inclination 
to pause for the reception of counsel, be it never so wise. 
But very often they are rushing into an abyss which they 
never anticipated. If they possessed their full senses they 
would, before entering upon the first step towards matri- 
mony, first enquire into each other's healthfulness. It is, in 
truth, as important, and much more so, as if they were 
about to insure their lives. Nay, they would go farther, and 
a sensible man, for instance, would not be satisfied to learn 
that the lady whom he contemplated making his second self 
was healthy, but he would ask about her parents and her 
grandparents ; and she would do the same by him. Disease 
is constantly being perpetuated by injudicious unions which 
result in the production of diseased children, who thus con- 
vey the weakness onward through generations, in all of 
which the bacillus, microbe, disease germ, or micro-organism 
is performing its special function, debilitating the mind, de- 
forming the body, disorganizing the tissues, destroying the 
energies, lowering the standard of the race, and bringing 
death. The hereditary character of tuberculosis or con- 
sumption is popularly understood, but it was long since 
shown that this disease is due to a microbe, Koch's bacillus 


which also may in many ways be conveyed to a healthy 
person. I may here remind the reader of the passage in 
Scripture where punishment to the third and fourth genera- 
tion is promised to those who by forbidden intermarriages 
promote disease, which they would do by transference of 
disease germs. 

We often hear a great deal about affinity in its effect 
through marriage of deteriorating offspring or perpetuating 
disease. Thus it is said that intermarriage of families 
through the second generation should be avoided, and we 
are told that a degenerate offspring necessarily ensues. 
Experience says that this is not absolutely true, although 
it is often justified by facts. Among the Hebrews such 
unions are common, but the race is prone to hereditary 
disease. No one doubts, however, that unions of affinity 
are undesirable, and why ? The micro-organisms which 
produce disease, as I have already shown, need congenial 
surroundings in which to propagate and to flourish. The 
organism of individuals presents some differences ; and one 
person may be a better medium for the growth of a partic- 
ular parasite than is another. This peculiarity is hereditary, 
just as facial expressions are hereditary. Thus it is tolera- 
bly certain that two persons closely related, as cousins for 
instance, possess to some extent the same favorable condi- 
tions for the development of a particular disease germ. If 
they marry, these conditions are intensified in their offspring. 
Two persons may have a tendency to tuberculosis or con- 
sumption, which is not in itself sufficiently strong for devel- 
opment, but when the combined tendency is found in a 
child it overcomes all other opposing influences and disease 
and death follow. Two persons not related may also have 
predisposition to disease, but in different forms. In that 
case the one might counteract the other, and so a negative 
result would be brought about; but if they did not counter- 
act each other, both would descend to the child, each in a 
mitigated form, that is neither being stronger than it existed 
in the parent, but at the same time the offspring would 


inherit the weakness of both father and mother, and thus its 
susceptibility to disease would be increased. 

If the same precautions were taken in perpetuating the 
human family as are taken in breeding the lower animals, we 
should not only attain to physical and mental superiority, 
but we should in all likelihood obliterate the causes of very 
much disease. Many of the Australian sheep-runs are far 
larger than any thing we have in America, either in the 
west or in Texas, and the superiority of the climate of that 
great island continent is specially adapted to the growth of 
sheep, cattle, and horses, who suffer from drought at times, 
but never from frost or snow. Sheep are the principal 
product of those great runs on account of their wool, cattle 
are used for tallow, and horses receive the least attention of 
the three, the pastures nearer to occupied territory being 
reserved for the best breed of horses. The consequence has 
been that no particular care has been given to horse breed- 
ing in the far interior. The first animals that were taken 
there were possibly any commonplace stock that served the 
requisite purposes of stockmen, shepherds, or for ordinary 
work around the home station. By degrees these have in- 
creased. The surplus have been turned out upon the run to 
shift for themselves over vast areas of grass land, and to 
breed indiscriminately. They have increased to such an 
extent that large herds of horses are now to be met with in 
some parts of the interior, but most of them are worthless. 
They have deteriorated in all the qualities that are looked 
for by the horse buyer in the markets, and so far as can be 
learned, an old horse is rarely if ever met with. They 
appear to suffer from some inherited disease, or they are 
more susceptible to disease than animals that are more care- 
fully bred usually are found to be. These horses are occa- 
sionally to be met with in the markets of Melbourne or 
Sydney, where they may be bought for about five or six 
dollars each when two or three years old. 

Now the system which we find to produce such deteriorat- 
ing consequences in horses, is exactly that which we are 


carrying out every day and from year's end to year's end 
in the propagation of mankind. We follow not the course 
that gives us a Hanover or an Ormonde, but that which in 
two or three generations runs down the value of a horse 
from five hundred or a thousand dollars to five. In the 
human family we cannot follow the methods under which 
the English race-horse of the present day has been devel- 
oped, but we might find it not so difficult to guard against 
the propagation of disease. Let every man marry none but 
a healthy woman, and let every woman be careful to select 
none but a healthy husband, and much disease, deformity 
of mind as well as body, and general debility would be 
avoided, and in course of time killed out. No hereditary 
disease owing its existence to micro-organisms could possi- 
bly be continued. But where one or both parents has the 
germs of disease, the offspring is not only liable but is 
almost certain to be sickly and unhealthy, and the doctor 
will be called simply to watch their downward progress 
towards dissolution victims of disease germs and of a 
process of fermentation. 



FORMS of vegetation, and also of animal life, vary in 
different latitudes. The fauna and flora of the tropics bear 
no resemblance to the animals and plants that have their 
home in temperate zones, and in like manner the micro- 
organisms, fungi, and microbes of various parts of the earth 
have distinct characteristics. 

Some plants can be transferred from the places where 
they are indigenous, and they can be grown and made to 
flourish in places which are quite foreign to them ; others 
will only vegetate in their native home and they perish 
when transferred to another region. The same applies to 
animals, not only to the larger but to the microscopic mem- 
bers of the animal kingdom. The bacillus of Koch cannot 
live in air. It can subsist and reproduce itself only in the 
organism. The yellow-fever germ likewise requires certain 
climatic conditions, as is well known, in order to propagate 
rapidly and produce disease. When those climatic or at- 
mospheric conditions do not exist, the germs perish and the 
disease dies out. The regions where it is most prevalent in 
this hemisphere, and it is worse here than elsewhere, are 
the Isthmus of Panama and some parts of Mexico and 
Cuba, though Louisiana and other portions of the United 
States, as is well known, are subject to it ; but in the latitude 
of New York, even on the sea border, it is comparatively 
harmless, the microbes ceasing their activity almost on en- 
tering the harbor of New York. 



Yellow-fever is acutely infectious. The microbes are in 
the atmosphere. That is their primary characteristic. But 
under favorable conditions, which are not yet accurately 
defined, though they probably are due to local impurities in 
the soil, the disease becomes contagious and endemic, as it 
ordinarily is at Colon and Panama. The differences thus 
noted are due no doubt merely to varying degrees of 
activity or vitality of the microbes. The worst form of the 
disease is found at Panama, and there no condition of 
health is sufficient to ward off the attack. The old and the 
young are alike affected. Persons in robust health may be 
struck down sooner than those whose appearance would 
indicate a less power of resistance, and so powerful is the 
micro-organism that causes it, so rapidly do they multiply, 
and so actively do they operate to bring about a fermenta- 
tion and destruction of the blood that a few hours some- 
times suffices to bring death. It is a remarkable fact that, 
notwithstanding the energy of the bacillus the mortality 
among children is less than among adults. What does this 
show ? How can it be accounted for ? Easily enough on 
the theory that there is something in the adult system to 
favor the growth of the microbe which does not exist to the 
same degree in the constitution of children before the age 
of puberty. 

The microbe of cholera is different from that of yellow- 
fever, but it is equally energetic in growth and action, and 
causes death quite as rapidly. Both probably arise from the 
same source, though in different parts of the world, and in 
that respect they are not unlikely to resemble the common 
microbe of summer diarrhoea. This has been ascertained to 
exist in the superficial layers of the earth, whence it may 
extend to water or to the various articles used as food, the 
vital manifestations of such micro-organisms depending on 
conditions of season, heat, and moisture, and on the presence 
of dead organic matter, animal or vegetable, or both. The 
microbe so produced may pass likewise into the atmosphere, 
whence undoubtedly it causes its evil effects in the three 


diseases under consideration. Thus it passes into the sys- 
tem, where it brings about a process of fermentation or 
decomposition, producing changes that result in giving the 
symptoms noticed in yellow-fever, cholera, and diarrhoea. 
The microbe is not the same in the three cases, but it may 
be similar, and certainly it may be produced in a like man- 
ner in a similar nidus and on a corresponding pabulum. 
But in the one it flourishes in Panama and Havana, in the 
other in Asia, and in the third in New York, or anywhere if 
due regard be not paid to drainage and to general sanitary 

It is not to be supposed that the germs of the atmos- 
phere are essentially different from those in the soil or 
in vegetables or animal matter. The latter constitute the 
nidus or place in which they are originated, and there, too, 
they find the pabulum, or food on which they thrive, but the 
same may quite readily be passed into the atmosphere, to 
float away to another place, then to increase and multiply 
according to the universal law of nature. The motes that 
are visible in the line of a sunbeam are often mere particles 
of lifeless matter, but often, too, they are minute organisms, 
with more or less power for mischief as soon as they fall 
upon a place that is suitable to their growth and development. 

Many plants have seeds that are furnished with a feathery 
structure which facilitates the action of the wind to raise them 
in the air and waft them sometimes many miles away from 
the spot where they grew. The thistle and dandelion are 
familiar illustrations of these. On my grounds at Austin I 
made some fish-ponds, and in one of them fish made their 
appearance, apparently spontaneously, certainly without 
my introducing any. All were quite small, as though re- 
cently hatched. How did they come there ? Is it not 
possible that the spawn might have been carried by high 
winds or water fowl ? I certainly think so, and I believe 
also that the careful observer of Nature will agree with me. 

The microbe that gives rise to Chagres fever is similar to, 
though not identical with, that of yellow-fever, and it has 


the same habitat, but it is even more delicate, and it perishes 
as soon as it is taken away from the neighborhood of its early 
development. The microbe of leprosy is another example in 
the other direction, for although it is chiefly at home in parts 
of eastern Europe, western Asia, and some of the islands of 
the South Pacific, it manages to live in other climates, though 
not with a like degree of activity and vigor. 

The greatest variety in vegetation is found in the tropics ; 
there, too, we find the greatest variety of animals, and logi- 
cally we should expect to find there and we actually do 
find the greatest variety of fungoid growths, microbes, and 
micro-organisms. Warmth and heat are favorable to organic 
life, but with the increased development of that, we see also 
an increased development of disease. The temperate zone 
produces fewer microbes, and it also generates a higher physi- 
cal excellence and more perfect health to resist their action, 
hence follows a minimum of disease, so far at least as the 
habits of people and the requirements of society permit. 

In the tropics there is not only a higher development of 
micro-organisms, both animal and vegetable, but also a 
lower power of resistance in the human frame, and, in 
consequence, a larger amount of disease, especially of those 
forms of disease where changes in the blood are brought 
about by fermentative processes, through the presence of 
microbes, in the shortest and most thorough manner. It is 
a matter of common experience that, if we go south in this 
country, malaria and diseases allied to it are more frequent 
there, especially in swampy districts, than they would be in 
similar localities in Canada. There ague is scarcely known ; 
and if we pass to Australia, where the vegetation is immedi- 
ately antagonistic to the growth of microbes, ague is un- 
known. A physician, who has been a resident of that 
country for nearly fifteen years, and who has travelled over 
many thousand miles of it, tells me that he never met with 
a case of intermittent fever there, and never heard of one. 

Two centuries ago ague was one of the most common 
diseases in England, and also one of the most fatal. Some 


of her kings and many members of the royal family died of 
it ; but as the population increased and opened up the land, 
as agriculture improved and drainage of the soil became 
general, it gradually disappeared, until in this century it had 
become limited to the low lands of Norfolk and Hunting- 
donshire, and in these, as a consequence of still more perfect 
drainage, it is becoming yet more rare, and always less fatal. 

But take another picture. By actual survey, made under 
government authority, it is found that two thirds of the 
peninsula of Florida are under water, covered by slowly 
flowing rivers, lakes, lagoons, and swamps. The whole 
atmosphere there is malarial. A high form of intermittent 
fever may not be very marked, but most of the inhabitants 
show symptoms of suffering from that cause, and evince 
nervous excitement and irritability, physical weakness, loss 
of mental equanimity and force, and all the other marks of 
an unwholesome, microbic atmosphere. If the country could 
be drained, which unfortunately is impossible, the health of 
the people would be entirely changed. In one sense it is 
fortunate that the soil is poor 95 per cent, sand, so that 
it is almost as unfavorable a nidus for microbes and fungi 
as it is for the ordinary crops of the farmer. If the soil were 
rich, Florida would hardly be endurable for white men, for 
the heat and moisture of the atmosphere would render it a 
most perfect nidus for dangerous vegetation, and the un- 
healthiness of Panama would most likely be extended 
to our country. Florida is now one of the most unhealthy 
States in the Union. 

Notwithstanding all this, the limit where microbes cannot 
exist has not been discovered. Possibly there may be some 
line in the northern and southern hemispheres beyond 
which micro-organisms' are not found in the atmosphere, 
although it is difficult to suppose, indeed it cannot be 
supposed, that they do not exist on the earth wherever 
higher forms of animal life are in existence. They may not 
be as numerous nor as full of vitality, and hence not as dan- 
gerous, but they are there. At the same time, if we wish to 




propagate them we find that the most favorable conditions 
are warmth, moisture, and frequently a deficiency of sun- 
light. It is too much a custom among Americans to close 
up their houses, excluding light and air alike. But what I 
have said shows the folly of such habits. Sunlight purifies 
the air, and while it aids the higher forms of vegetation, it is 
apt to destroy fungoid growths : not, however, by its direct 
influence, which is always salutary, but by withholding the 
moisture that is necessary to micro-organic production. 

Some interesting experiments on this subject have been 
made by M. Duclaux on various forms of microbe, and he 
states that exposure to the sun's rays for a few hours 
sufficed to destroy their vitality, or at any rate to arrest 
their activity. This is doubtless true; at the same time the 
absence of moisture tends to accellerate such a result. Throw 
a wet dress into a trunk, and mildew or some form of fungus 
will form upon it. Hang it above the ground, where it can 
receive air and sunshine, and no such result ensues. 

In hot and dry countries, such as New Mexico or Arizona, 
meat may be hung in the hot sun and it merely drys and re- 
mains fit for food. But let the atmosphere be moist, under 
similar conditions, and fermentation soon begins, leading 
up to putrefaction. 

Florists suffer considerably in damp, sultry weather, when 
there is no sunlight, from injury done to their plants by 
fungi. Seedlings " damp off," which means that fungi 
appear upon their leaves, check their growth, and ulti- 
mately kill them. The camellia japonica is especially liable 
to this. In like manner newly-cut oats that become wet 
before harvesting are surely affected in the same way, and 
unless promptly attended to they speedily rot. 

Vinegar is the result of a fermentative process brought 
about by the action of a microbe, but a warm temperature 
is necessary. The preparation of bread with yeast is again 
a fermentation, the active agent being a vegetable formation 
known popularly as the yeast-plant. By its growth and in- 
crease in the bulk of the material, carbonic-acid gas is 


formed, which mechanically " raises " the dough. Many 
years ago it was suggested that the gas might be produced 
by chemical means, and so the use of yeast would be ren- 
dered unnecessary. This was done at first by dividing the 
dough into two portions, adding dilute nitric acid to one 
and carbonate of soda to the other, then mixing them 
thoroughly. A chemical decomposition took place, the gas 
caused the dough to rise, and a very excellent bread 
resulted. This, which at the time was merely a laboratory 
experiment, led, at no distant day, to the introduction of 
baking powders, but it is noteworthy that bread produced 
by the use of yeast is still the most satisfactory and the 
most wholesome, the action of the yeast-plant being more 
gradual and leaving no chemical salt behind. 

Meat spoils more readily in. a warm and close room than 
when exposed to the air or to cold. In those parts of 
Europe where the winters are cold without severe frost, as, 
for example, in England, it is not unusual to hang meat in 
places where a free current of air can be obtained at all 
times, and it remains in that position for perhaps five or six 
weeks, according to the weather. It is not " spoiled." On 
the contrary, it becomes tender and acquires a flavor which 
epicures admire. This cannot be done where the meat 
freezes, and in a warm unventilated place it would become 
unfit for food in a very few hours. The cause of this is the 
formation of a micro-organism the result of fermentation or 
decomposition. Of course I exclude reference to the injury 
that may be done by insects, the effect referred to implying 
no other influence than such as is derived from contact with 
the atmosphere, and the germs contained in it. 

Watch Nature, observe her operations, pause and think 
over them, and many useful lessons will be learned, many 
old prejudices swept away, and numberless errors will be 
corrected. Mere book-readers are theorists ; Nature's readers 
are practical. The former are apt to take for granted what 
others tell them ; the latter judge for themselves. Theorists 
work blindly ; they cannot see what they may, and will not 




see what they should. They may stumble over things, but 
they refuse to accept truths which Nature constantly holds 
up before them, and it is in this way that processes 
that are recognized in some things are ignored in others, 
because they seem to be at variance with theory. The full 
importance of fermentation, its general recurrence in various 
processes of Nature, and the import of micro-organisms and 
microbes in the causation of natural phenomena, among 
which the production of diseased conditions is not the least 
important, have never been hitherto adequately acknowl- 
edged ; and it is because observation has been too little 
made and theory has occupied men's minds. I have 
sufficiently outlined the true cause of disease. The in- 
stances I have given should suffice to satisfy any one who 
is free from prejudice and from the cobwebs of the old 
school of teachers. They are not beyond the reach of 
ordinary intelligences. Nature, in her operations, abhors 
complicated processes. She works by simple methods, and 
her laws are as wide-reaching as they are simple. She does 
not devise some complicated plan for producing one par- 
ticular disease, and then set to work to arrange another 
cause for a second form of sickness. On the contrary, she 
lays down certain broad rules upon which all operations are 
conducted. These rules apply to both kingdoms of organic 
life with results that are only modified by circumstances of 
each. If they are not respected, trouble ensues. Resistance 
brings about catastrophe, and even neglect of their opera- 
tion has its perils. But when we know what we have 
to accomplish, a great part of our difficulty is cleared away. 
Directly we are informed as to the cause of a disease, the 
chief obstacle to finding a remedy is removed. But if we 
enter upon the investigation blinded with tradition and with 
book-reading only, it stands to reason that the greatest 
difficulties in the way of discovering a remedy are presented. 



WHY medicine fails to. cure disease is a proposition that 
we have all, at some time or other, probably asked ourselves. 
It is an important problem, and one that should be solved. 
But, at the outset, I am reminded of a question which, it is 
said, was once proposed to the Roman senators : " Why does 
a pail of water with a fish swimming in it weigh no more 
than the same pail of water without the fish ? " It is said 
that a long discussion took place over this, and that various 
explanations were suggested, until some one fell back on 
experiment, and then it was discovered that the water with 
the fish in it did weigh more. 

So, in the question, why does medicine fail to cure disease? 
I may be required to show first that it does fail. I have no 
objection to this ; on the contrary, it is a logical and a 
proper way to proceed, clearing as we go. At the same 
time, the too frequent failure of medicine as a science must 
be evident to every observer. We have no right to ask that 
the doctors shall cure under all circumstances and all condi- 
tions. If they did that, life would be perpetual and death 
impossible, and that would be a subversion of Nature's laws. 
But we all know quite well that medicine fails when we are 
justified in looking for success. Physicians themselves are 
aware that, while their best talent and abilities may be given 
to a patient, he nevertheless dies, and often they live to 
look back upon the case with regrets that, with increased 
knowledge, a different result might have been attained. 



It is acknowledged by its disciples that medical science 
has made great progress during the past half-century, and 
that it is still advancing year by year. This shows at least 
that is is not an exact science that is, not perfect, but that 
new discoveries can be made, changes can be effected, and, 
possibly, what is now considered excellent may erelong be 
discarded in practice for something that is at present un- 
known, or at any rate unaccepted. It follows, therefore, 
that, if the door for improvement be open, nobody should 
be precluded from entering because only he happens to be 
not one of the elect. 

No day passes but illustrations occur everywhere of the 
fact that medicine fails to cure, and that too, where failure 
should be impossible. The reason of this is what I propose 
to elucidate, and, in order to do it, it is of little use to 
theorize. We must discover facts ; we must look at the 
matter in a practical way, and endeavor to deal with it so 
that it can be readily understood by any one who wants 
something more than a string of technicalities. 

The reader has probably indulged in the perusal of medi- 
cal books which tell him how to cure himself, or he has con- 
sulted his doctor and received information from him, or he 
may have read something about family medicines. Most of 
the books which attempt to popularize these subjects are 
pernicious. They give symptoms and remedies. They draw 
the usual differences between ailments, and define particular 
remedies for each. They treat disease with hard and fast 
lines, ignoring the power of the physician's discernment and 
the subtle evidences which only an accomplished doctor can 
detect. People who read them are prone to imagine them- 
selves afflicted with symptoms that they see described, and 
many get up from their perusal convinced that they have 
cancer, or Bright's disease, or consumption, or heart trouble, 
when, in truth, they, have nothing whatever the matter with 
them, or, at most, a disordered stomach. 

From my point of view they are yet more pernicious, 
being bad not only in their consequences, but in their prin- 


ciples. For the position I take is entirely at variance with 
that which the advice of the usual family physician supports. 
My discovery, as may be gleaned from what I have already 
said, is entirely different from any thing that has ever been 
introduced from the beginning to the present day for the 
purpose of curing disease. My proposition is simple, but it 
comes from study and observation of Nature. I have found 
that all disease may be concentrated under one head. It 
may assume different forms in different persons. It may be 
known, for instance, as fever in one, pneumonia in another, 
diphtheria in a third, cholera or diarrhoea in a fourth, and so 
on. But the differences which give rise to the necessity for 
using such names are merely details. There is, in truth, but 
one disease. It develops in various ways. It produces dif- 
ferent symptoms, all of which are dependent on conditions, 
some of which may readily be defined. But, in the first in- 
stance, disease is uniform. And just as there is actually but 
one disease, so there is but one cause of disease, and that 
may be limited in the common acceptation of the one word 
"decay." But what is decay? The visible result of fer- 
mentation. And what is fermentation ? The phenomena 
produced in organic matter by the action of microbes. 

In this consideration, and for all practical purposes, it is 
quite immaterial to know the peculiarity of the microbe that 
we find in any particular instance. It may be interesting to 
the close observer to watch the forms and mode of evolu- 
tion of these little creatures, and it may be satisfactory so 
to differentiate their forms and habits as to be able to clas- 
sify and to name them. But this does not affect the mode 
of cure. A microbe is a microbe. The same treatment 
affects them, the same curative agent kills them, whatever 
their form or whatever be the effects which they produce. 
The only difference that we notice is in regard to time, 
some ailments being more readily reached than others. 

It is not of so much consequence to the farmer to know 
what weeds are in his cornfield, as it is to learn the best 
means of cutting them down and keeping them out of his 


crops. He need not be a botanist. He does not require to 
know the natural order and the generic and specific names 
of a plant before he puts the hoe to it ; nor does he pause 
to learn the construction of its fibres and the character of 
its cells. He merely recognizes it as a noxious plant, and 
he destroys it. Neither is it of much consequence to him to 
know that weeds are not all alike. It is enough to be sure 
that they are weeds, and he applies the same remedy to get 
them out of the way. If his crops look yellow, or show evi- 
dences of rust and disease, he does not go to his study, to 
his microscope and his books in order to satisfy himself what 
sort of microbe or fungus it is that is endangering his prop- 
erty, but he goes to work in a practical manner to cure the 
disease and to rid himself of the pest. It is not necessary 
to learn the particular character of the fungi that he sees 
on his plants, his fences, his timber, or his house ; all he 
wants is to be convinced that they are there, and that they 
are injurious, and he immediately tries to find out and to 
apply the remedy for their destruction. 

Let me not be misunderstood. I have not a word against 
scientific investigation. I understand too well its value. I 
would not disparage the spirit which leads to a close exami- 
nation of the minutest of Nature's works. On the contrary, 
I am interested in their description. I prize the work which 
shows me their distinctive peculiarities of structure, form, 
size, properties, mode of existence and development ; and I 
appreciate the patience and the skill of those who pursue 
such a course of investigation, and are capable of arranging 
for scientific purposes these most wonderful organisms. I 
make frequent use of that knowledge in these pages, and 
fully acknowledge its abounding interest. But, at the same 
time, I hold that, for purposes of curing only the diseases to 
which the human body is subject, it is not necessary that we 
should know the form, size, development and classification 
of the microbes that produce disease. There may be one or 
a dozen, each producing its own symptoms, or affecting dif- 
ferent parts. You do not stop to examine them, and, give 


them their place in the lists of science ; you only ask how to 
get rid of them, how to restore the health and preserve the 
body from their depredations. To delay for the sake of 
diagnosis is simply to waste valuable time. It is one of the 
errors of so-called scientific medicine, and should have noth- 
ing to do with the cure. The thing of all importance is the 
remedy. I am acquainted with a large number of various 
forms of disease in plants, but I do not know all, and I 
could never learn to know them, because the micro-organisms 
hybridize and produce new forms, and, of course, each one 
exhibits some different characteristics in habit and results, 
while they have their special pabulum, some being found in 
large plants or large animals and others, in small ones. This 
I purpose to demonstrate by practical evidence derived from 
observation of Nature, and I shall certainly be able to sus- 
tain the truth of my position. So much has been written 
which cannot be proved, so many promises are made which 
cannot be kept, and in various ways the people are held so 
much in ignorance of things which they ought to know, that 
their confidence is weakened in all. They have been blind- 
folded and led astray so often that they distrust everybody 
who offers to enlighten and lead them, however much he 
knows himself to be in the right. But facts should convince, 
and I think I can in every instance produce facts to prove 
all that I claim. 

I wish this to be distinctly understood. I set no value 
on theory. My studies have been practical. The ground- 
work of my discoveries is in observation. I take nothing 
which I cannot prove, nothing which is not appreciable to 
the senses. I rely entirely upon facts to sustain the value 
of what I have done. I do not claim that the field I have 
wrought in is untrodden. Thousands of investigators and 
of the brightest intellects in the world are at work in it. 
The problem of how to stop fermentation, to destroy fungi, 
and to prevent the appearance and neutralize the develop- 
ment and operation of microbes is being well handled, but 
the solution is here. 


We paint our houses not only because they look better 
painted, but because the process preserves them from decay. 
The paint checks or stops the development of micro-organ- 
isms, which find their favorite resting-place in wood, brick, 
or stone, and the best material of that kind is the one which 
most certainly produces such result. The painter or builder 
does not stop to inquire the nature of the fungus that 
threatens him. He does not trouble himself about a scien- 
tific investigation. He knows that there is a danger to be 
met ; he knows how to meet it ; he understands the remedy 
to be applied, and he applies it. He is also well aware that 
the oftener he applies it, and the more effective he makes 
the application, the better will he preserve his property. 
One coat of paint is useful, but several are necessary. The 
matter requires constant attention. The steady repetition 
of the remedy alone secures all the advantage and makes 
the protection perfect. 

In this direction there are several resources at our com- 
mand, discovered, not by medical science, but by practical 
experimenters, and people of common-sen^e and practical 
inclinations. For example, the desirability of protecting 
railroad ties from decay has been answered by applications 
of hot tar, creosote, and allied substances. Soluble silica 
has been driven into their substances by atmospheric or 
hydraulic pressure for the same purpose. In India it is 
hardly possible to preserve telegraph poles and railroad ties 
from destruction, and iron has, in most instances, been sub- 
stituted. Fences are also made of iron in that country. 
There is one observation, however, which it is worth while 
to mention. It has been found that the wooden ties on a 
road where trains are frequent are less subject to injury than 
those not in use. This is attributed to vibration, and, if the 
explanation be correct, it opens out a field for inquiry. 

On the same principle upon which tar and creosote are 
applied to timber do we submit meat to the effects of wood 
smoke. This permeates the substance, kills microbes, and 
of course prevents their development. It would indeed be 


easy to cite thousands of cases where applications of a more 
or less poisonous character are used, which would kill not 
only microbes but every living thing, whether animal or 
vegetable. The embalming of bodies, now so fashionable, 
is nothing more than a use of poisonous solutions calculated 
to prevent the process of decomposition or fermentation, 
and many of the so-called remedies used by physicians to 
treat disease are likewise of a highly poisonous character. 
Sometimes what seem to be simple and harmless remedies 
are not so. An Italian physician has recently suggested the 
use of sulphur in the treatment of typhoid fever, but in 
enormous doses frequently repeated. He would also cover 
the patient and the bedclothes with sulphur, and, to the 
ordinary reader, this may seem a very innocent remedy. 
But chemical changes take place, and the well-known yellow 
powder is converted into very energetic compounds, and it 
then becomes a question whether the microbes or the patient 
will die first. That is all. Again, many of the compounds 
advertised for popular application are extremely dangerous, 
and too much caution cannot be exercised in their use, 
though people who are wise will leave such things alone 
altogether, and fall back upon those only which are known 
not to be injurious. 

The pharmacist may look with pride upon his well-filled 
shelves, where arsenic and corrosive sublimate stand side by 
side with morphia, carbolic acid, laudanum, nux vomica, 
chloral, creosote, chloroform, and a host of similar prepara- 
tions, all of which are used by physicians to kill microbes, 
or, as they say, to cure disease. And these things do kill 
microbes, but not until the blood and the tissues are satu- 
rated with them, and then the effect is not for a day but for 
ever. No one denies that we can kill microbes in the human 
system by soaking the body with poisonous substances, just 
as the embalmer attains a similar end by similar means, but it 
is at the cost of the patient's life. The body may be filled 
throughout the blood, bones, muscles, nerves, all the tis- 
sues, may be filled with a poisonous antiseptic, just as the rail- 




road tie may be permeated with creosote or silicic acid, and 
assuredly the microbes will be killed and their propagation 
will be rendered impossible, but the body will be killed, too. 
And, on the other hand, if the railroad tie be not thoroughly 
soaked, it will not be preserved, while the body, if not effec- 
tually saturated with poison, will not be freed from microbes, 
and, consequently, will not be put out of danger. That is 
the dilemma in which any person is who places himself at 
the mercy of medical science as it is practised. The remedy 
is worse than the disease. If he does not die of the one he 
does of the other, or, if he gets well, it is because his system 
was superior to both. The only escape that he has is to 
find something which, while it effectually destroys microbes 
and prevents fermentation, does not act injuriously upon the 
bodily organization. It is useless to take a small quantity 
of a poison which is insufficient to kill the microbe, and it 
is fatal to take a larger amount, which, while staying the 
disease, is itself destructive. 

This argument seems clear, and every one's common-sense 
must tell them that it is sound, yet people go on taking 
poisonous drugs and compounds, and they will swallow any 
thing that comes to them with the authority of a medical 
diploma, or of a person who writes M.D. after his name. 
Rarely, indeed, do they stop to ask whether those magical 
letters have any intrinsic value. They forget even that 
there are doctors and doctors. The druggist on the corner 
is dubbed a doctor, and the boy who sweeps out the store is 
known among his acquaintances as doctor. Then there are 
horse and cattle doctors, tooth doctors, corn doctors, nail 
doctors, not to mention divinity doctors, bone doctors, 
philosophy doctors, and a host besides. But, in good sooth, 
the doctor of medicine need not know any thing. Medical 
colleges are a multitude. They compete with each other to 
try which can get the most students. They accept anybody, 
educated or uneducated, so long as he can pay the fees. 
They make his work as light as possible, and the require- 
ments for a degree as easy as possible. And when they have 


received all the money that their scheme requires they make 
the lad a Doctor of Medicine full-fledged, and send him out 
into the world with a license to kill, which is all that he can 
do with any certainty. The bills of mortality testify to the 
wickedness of such a system, and show only too plainly that 
persons who are entitled by law to call themselves physicians 
do fail. 

It is doubly unfortunate that many of these persons have 
no such right, so careless is the law-making power in this 
country, for in Europe medical education is something very 
real, and a physician or a surgeon in Germany, England, or 
France is bound to be a man of considerable degree of 
scientific attainment. For years past a profitable business 
has been done here in the manufacture and sale of bogus 
medical degrees, of which Vermont has been the centre. 
These vary in price from five to a hundred dollars, but no 
reasonable offer is refused. The applicant need have no 
knowledge of medicine. He may be unable to distinguish 
arsenic from chalk, or strychnine from either. He wants 
only the amount of money necessary to pay for the parch- 
ment, and he can be dubbed a doctor of medicine on short 

A foreign physician travelling through the Northern 
States visited Montpelier, Vermont. There a young doctor, 
to whom he had been introduced, requested him to visit 
with himself a case of " canker rash." The request was 
willingly complied with, for, to the foreigner, " canker rash " 
was a new disease he had never heard of it, and his curi- 
osity was aroused. It was a case of ordinary scarlet-fever. 
Some time after, when the acquaintanceship between the 
two physicians had developed, the question was asked why 
scarlet-fever was called " canker rash." " Oh," said the young 
Green-Mountain doctor, " when we don't know whether a 
case is one of scarlet-fever or measles, we call it canker 
rash." The same man boasted that his degree of M.D., 
which he had procured from Vermont College, had cost him 
only three hundred dollars and nine months in time, during 


which he earned his living by working as a carpenter ! Is 
there much room for wonder that " physicians " do not cure 
disease ? 

Under the American system of medical education very 
few physicians can write a prescription correctly. Druggists' 
books tell strange tales, and the public little know how much 
they are indebted to intelligent pharmacists for correcting 
the errors and making good the shortcomings of the family 

The fault for this rests as much with the people as with 
the profession. The law prescribes no standard for the 
physician's education. It provides no means whereby his 
competency may be tested. He goes for examination before 
the men who have been his teachers, and whose interests 
are to pass him and grant him his diploma. They have no 
inducement whatever to regard the public welfare, and many 
young men go out from American medical schools with no 
more medical knowledge than they had of general education 
when they attended their first lecture. The three essentials 
for a competent physican and surgeon, to wit : a sound gen- 
eral and classical education, the training and feelings of a 
gentleman, and thorough practical and theoretical knowledge 
of all science and art that can alone justify a man in hold- 
ing the lives of others in his hands, are not insisted upon in 
any medical college in the country. If they were universal, 
as they ought to be, such a display of ignorance as will be 
found in the appendix, quoted from an examination in 
Virginia, would not be possible. 

The doctors themselves understand all this, and they are 
careful to keep people in ignorance as far as possible of the 
laws and operations of Nature. Directly a man learns how 
to cure himself he has no need for a doctor, but, so long as 
he is kept in the dark as to the nature of disease and the 
means by which he could relieve himself of it, he is at the 
mercy of the physician. Sickness is something incompre- 
hensible to him, and he goes for help because he knows no 
better. In many instances the doctor is as ignorant as his 


patient, and knows no more of the real nature of the disease 
than if he had never had a college diploma. He works, 
then, absolutely in the dark. He is as likely to use medi- 
cines that do harm as he is to fall upon such as might prove 
useful. He is certain of nothing. If the patient recovers, 
he claims the credit and his bill. If the patient dies, he 
writes a certificate for the Board of Health, demands his 
pay, and goes to work again on somebody else. 

But, under the standard of humanity, this glorious profes- 
sion has united into an organization which demands that all 
who desire to share its privileges shall declare not to depart 
from orthodox teachings, but to follow in certain tracks, and 
adhere to specific principles, which are already laid down. 
If other persons interfere, or attempt to open the eyes of 
the people to a true knowledge of things, they insist that 
their rights are interfered with, that the public interests are 
being endangered, and the safety of the people imperilled, 
and forthwith they ask for laws to protect themselves and 
they get them. They become a corporation barricaded by 
the courts and the Legislature, forbidding the education of 
the people in natural things that concern them intimately, 
dictating what shall be done in questions of life and death, 
laying down routine methods, and guarding themselves 
against all responsibility when their dictatorial system fails 
to render the benefit that everybody has a right to look for. 
This is done in the cause of medical science, as it is called ; 
it is done with the excuse that the people need to be pro- 
tected against ignorance, and that the public health is some- 
thing too sacred to be left in charge of unauthorized practi- 
tioners. Yet this same corporation permits young men to 
go forth every year, with authority given on a piece of 
parchment to compound drugs, to administer powerful 
poisons, to hold the lives of the people in their hands, while 
they are themselves absolutely unqualified for any responsi- 
bility whatever of the kind. They have no experience, no 
knowledge; they have merely paid certain fees, and had ex- 
plained to them what are called the ethics of professional 


life. They go forth to trade upon the ignorance of the 
people, to work upon their fears, to play a part of mystery 
and deception, and to send thousands to their graves who, 
under a more liberal system, would be restored from disease 
to health, and to their families and their occupations. 

Books and papers published by the profession are not 
intended to enlighten the public, but to strengthen the 
doctors within their own fortress, to monopolize the power 
which they have secured to themselves by the law and by a 
force of rigid organization. True, there are books some- 
times published by members of the profession ostensibly for 
public use, but they are of no value. Pretending to convey 
popular instruction, they stop just at the place where 
knowledge is most needed, and they leave the reader still at 
the mercy of the consulting physician. Moreover, they are 
prepared by men who still follow the routine and use the 
same agencies of the incorporated body to which they 
belong, and, where they are not absolutely misleading, the 
inquirer finds them to be far from instructive in any practi- 
cal manner. Then, again, there are men who also hold the 
paper which authorizes them to dub themselves doctors of 
medicine who publish books to prey upon the fears as well 
as upon the ignorance of those who read them. These 
adventurers use the mails for disseminating disgusting circu- 
lars wherewith to entrap their victims. They offer remedies 
which they do not possess. They draw large sums of 
money every year from their victims, and, for some mysteri- 
ous reason, the law does not interfere with them in their 
nefarious business. These people pretend to cure disease, 
knowing that their pretence is fraudulent. They claim to 
diagnose a case, and they send the same type-written diagnosis 
to everybody who is foolish enough to go to them. They 
secure money for purposes which they have no intention to 
carry out, and thus place themselves on a level with the 
" green-goods man," who promises to send counterfeit bills, 
and forwards instead a box of sawdust. Yet the doctors 
who do these things are still allowed to remain within the 


organization of the profession, and to kill and defraud under 
the protection of a diploma. 

I have no fear that the many able, learned, and progressive 
men that the medical profession numbers among its mem- 
bers will read these strictures as applying to them. I have 
no contention with physicians, many of whom are my most 
favorable critics ; but I war against bad methods and false 
principles. The newspaper reporter who, for notoriety and 
pay, states a subjective case to different physicians, and 
then publishes their confidential opinions (vide appendix), 
deserves but little credit. If her object be to ridicule the 
doctors, she fails ; if it be to accentuate the modern craze 
for sensationalism, and to show that it must be fed even at 
the cost of impertinence and to the discredit of journalism, 
she succeeds. The profession is itself to blame for any lack 
of confidence that the public may have, because it admits 
so much incompetency to its ranks, and so often shows itself 
as preying upon ignorance, which it encourages, and in an 
illiberal treatment of outside persons, whom it affects to 

*:* * 



rm&T .-f r>^ 




THE diseases enumerated by physicians would probably 
run into thousands, and, to cure all these various forms, 
there are drugs which would also run into thousands. No 
ordinary person can understand all these. It requires one 
to be specially instructed, and to have devoted his life to 
the study, and then he only knows how to diagnose an ail- 
ment, that is, how to classify it in the list which has been 
artificially made and put before him. He does not cure 
When a cure is effected, it is due to other causes, not cer- 
tainly to the poisonous drugs that have been administered. 
And when one of these physicians, eminent in his way and 
among his fellows, becomes ill, say with cancer, or consump- 
tion, or dropsy, his faculty fails him ; he dies, and the disease 
of which he died is called incurable. Take the cases of 
General Grant, of John Roach, of the Emperor of Germany. 
They were in the hands of the most reputable physicians 
within reach. No gold could save them ; and so it is, the 
rich and the poor run the same risk, under the system of 
medical organization and " eminent doctors." And all this 
is a logical, a necessary sequence to ignorance of Nature's 
laws and Natural processes. He who would cure himself 
and others must study Nature, and examine the processes 
by which Nature creates and destroys. It is useless to work 
upon artificial methods. Disease is a reality. It cannot be 
got rid of by any theoretical processes. It does not call for 
complicated devices. But it must be dealt with in a practi- 



cal manner. We are bringing ourselves face to face with 
Nature when we seek to cure disease. Hence, we must 
learn her ways, and be guided by the knowledge so attained. 
It is of no use to go aside to form fancies of our own. They 
are useless. Nature teaches us what to do, and to contend 
against her is only to defeat our own purpose. 

Although, as I have said, constant change is one of the 
laws of the universe, yet we must acknowledge that very 
much of the disease and many of the ailments that trouble 
and vex us are due to man himself. They are not a part of 
the original plan of the world. The mind at once suggests 
to itself many which are well known to be the result of 
man's irregularities, excesses, or neglect, and physicians, 
with their wider experience, can add greatly to the number. 
As a general rule, Nature starts in all her works from a 
healthy basis. This does not mean that all created organ- 
isms are, in the first instance, pathologically perfect, but it 
does mean that disease in any and every form is an abnormal 
condition. It is a diversion from the direct principle of 
Nature. Vegetation produced from healthful seeds is itself 
healthy, and the same rule applies to animals, of which man 
is only one. Native races that live in a primitive condition 
suffer far less from disease than do the luxurious and pam- 
pered children of a high civilization. The aborigine of this 
country, who is erroneously spoken of as an " Indian," is 
afflicted with diseases, through contact with the white man, 
which he did not know of when he exercised his rightful 
ownership of the country unmolested. The native who 
roams without shelter or clothing over the vast domain of 
Australia, enjoys the most vigorous health that his slender 
living will allow. The laws compel him, when he visits a 
town or village, to wear a blanket, and, in due time, the 
changes of covering himself to-day and going -nude to-mor- 
row, result, in most instances, in speedy death by pneumonia 
or consumption. The introduction of spirituous liquors 
among aboriginal tribes is not the only, or even the principal, 
factor in their disappearance. There are very few sections 


of the human family where fermented drinks were not in use 
long before the intrusion of white men. Where wise policy 
has prevailed, as among the Maoris under British rule, the 
native race has taken its place and held its own, not only in 
the circles of labor and commerce, but in legislation, and 
very much of its native vigor is maintained by the customs 
of healthy out-door exercise and the use of plain food. It 
seems anomalous, yet it is true, that the farther we reach 
into the influence of civilization, the farther we depart from 
Nature, and the greater becomes the tendency to debility 
and disease. Luxury breeds effeminacy, but it also predis- 
poses to sickness, and many of the most troublesome ail- 
ments are due to it, even as they are absolutely unknown 
to the denizen of the primeval forest, or to his unpolished 

descendant in the wilds of the earth. 

Nor does it seem that the human frame accustoms itself 
to this artificial life. Although continuing for generations, 
and even for centuries, under the same influence, it never 
resumes its pristine invulnerability to the attacks of physical 
ailments. Susceptibility to disease remains ; instead of sub- 
siding it becomes hereditary, and so luxury and culture levy 
their tax upon the body. The farm laborer of England, the 
peasant of Germany or France, with his healthful life, 
peaceful surroundings and contentment, plain living, and 
freedom from care, enjoys a freedom from disease and a 
hardy power of resistance to its causes which the pampered 
victim of wealth and social necessities never knows. 

I will now proceed to sketch my own experiences, from 
early life till the present, and the reader who will patiently 
follow me throughout will have no difficulty in realizing that 
the discovery I have made cannot fail to effect a revolution 
in the treatment and cure of disease. The causes of disease 
in plants and animals have been already described ; I pro- 
pose now to detail my methods for curing plants, and then 
give evidence concerning the means I have used for effecting 
cures in myself and others. 

While engaged in business with my nursery in Austin, 


Texas, I suffered from an attack of malaria, or intermittent 
fever, and I had recourse to several doctors, who, in the 
usual way, prescribed for me various drugs. I swallowed 
the contents of bottle after bottle, until their number be- 
came too great for calculation. I took quinine until it failed 
to have any effect. I lost color and weight, and was afflicted 
with an incessant cough, that destroyed my rest, wore away 
my strength, and led me and my friends to the conviction 
that I was soon to become a victim to consumption. My 
days seemed numbered. All hope of a cure was abandoned. 
Every thing that had been done by the doctors had failed. 
Their efforts seemed to be utterly useless. Instead of get- 
ting better, I gradually became worse. I lost energy and 
the capacity to attend to my affairs. Every resource known 
to the doctors thus far had been used, and my life seemed 
to be passing away, so that but a short thne only was needed 
to determine the result. In this emergency I resorted to 
another doctor, who advised me to try the rarefied air of 
Colorado, high up in the mountains, where the atmosphere 
is supposed to be purer and free from the debilitating 
influences of the plains. This I could not do, nor do I feel 
sure that I would have done it if I had been able. The 
demands of my business forbade my leaving home, and then 
I had never seen any one return from Colorado who had 
been cured of consumption, which my friends feared for me. 
My condition was, nevertheless, desperate. The malarial 
fever had affected me for seventeen years, during the last 
two of which it had been complicated with sciatica and 
articular rheumatism, and I had become literally a physical 
wreck. It can well be understood that, amid such long suf- 
fering, and the total failure of doctors to afford me the 
necessary relief, I had made myself acquainted with all 
advertised remedies and proprietary medicines. Still the 
physicians did not leave me. They were my constant visi- 
tors, prescribing one thing to-day and another to-morrow, 
only to discover that every new prescription was, like its 
predecessor, a failure. Two years before I discovered the 


microbe-killer, I lost two children a boy and a girl. They 
had not been strong. They were brought up by hand, my 
wife being too weak to nurse them. Microbes affected the 
milk, which, in turn, carried disease to the stomachs of the 
infants. They became ill. Their stomachs presently re- 
fused food. Paregoric, soothing-syrup, and all the remedies 
that the doctors could devise from their drug-lists were tried 
without effect, and the children died. The medicines killed 
them, and the reasons I shall be prepared to explain. 

This loss distracted my attention from my business. Up 
to that time I had devoted myself closely to my business 
as a gardener. All books and literature of my occupation I 
read. I was an earnest subscriber to every floral magazine 
that came within my knowledge, for I always found in them 
something that was useful and instructive. I am anxious to 
give full credit to such publications, for I am much indebted 
to them, since it was in them that I found the first hints 
which led me on to experiments, and hence to the discovery 
of a certain and safe means of killing fungi and microbes. 
They kept me to the study of Nature. No medical work or 
magazine would do that. None of them ever directed me 
to natural sources, but, on the contrary, whenever I took 
one up it diverted me from the line of my researches, dis- 
turbed the tenor of my investigations, and confused my 

Medical papers would tell me the symptoms of fever or 
rheumatism or diphtheria. They would describe the microbe 
of typhoid, compare it with the microbe of other diseases, 
explain its mode and rapidity of propagation, sketch its 
appearance under the microscope, classify it, and name it, 
but they would not tell how to kill it. The symptoms which 
I saw in print were better understood by me in my body. 
One who has had itching piles can certainly comprehend 
the evidences and feelings better than one who merely writes 
or reads about them. When I arose in the morning I knew 
that I had no energy, that I felt more tired than when I 
went to bed. When I walked I knew that I felt as though 


there were twenty pounds of lead tied to my feet. When I 
drove to my seed-store I knew that I could sit only on the 
edge of my buggy, because the microbes would not let me 
sit any other way, and when I stepped to the ground I knew 
that it took me several minutes before I could move, the 
microbes that produced sciatica and rheumatism objecting 
to being disturbed, and so preventing me. Every attempt 
to move had to be slow and deliberate, until they should 
get accustomed to the change. I was a living barometer. 
Whenever the weather altered, and especially if it became 
cooler, my collection of microbes could anticipate it two or 
three days, and, when the storm came, they would freeze, 
and force me to take refuge by a red-hot stove to get them 

The inevitable result of all this was clear. I had no par- 
ticular wish to leave the world. It is a pleasant enough 
place to be in, provided a man has health and some little 
necessaries. It is possible to imagine that there may be 
worse. What I had seen of it had been satisfactory enough 
in some respects, and I determined to stay a little longer, if 
I could. At the same time, I knew that there must be a 
change, that things could not go on as they were for long, 
or that, if they did, I must make up my mind to follow my 
children, whither we must all go sooner or later. I had 
taken all the remedies that were presented to me ; I had 
seen my children pass away ; I had observed death around 
me striking down the young and the old, and I myself was 
far on. my way to the same fate ; what wonder should there 
be, then, if I realized the momentous fact that physicians 
cannot cure disease in other words, that medicine does not 
destroy microbes. 

Good friends were generous with their advice. I was 
told to try first one thing then another, but I had become 
wearied with what I had come to believe was so much hum- 
bug, and I determined to swallow no more medicine. I 
again studied advertisements. There I saw commended 
electric belts, porous plasters, liniments, lotions, and salves, 




and all sorts of external applications that would cure every 
thing, purify the blood, strengthen the nerves, stimulate the 
functions of all the organs, kill the microbes, and rejuvenate 
the individual in mind and body. Well, this was something. 
Whatever such things would or would not do, there was no 
medicine in them nothing to swallow, no poison, so, if 
they did no good, I could not see that they would do harm. 
The end of my thinking was that I sent off ten dollars to 
Chicago for an electric belt. Some of the advertising firms 
fail to respond, as they promise, to money remittances, but 
my belt came, and I lost no time in fixing it on. It reminded 
me of former days when I was a soldier, with belt and sabre, 
in the German army. Then I jumped ditches eight feet 
wide, and sang and laughed when others fell into the water, 
but now things were changed. Then I had health and 
youth, now I was far older in health than in years, but I 
concluded that, being but forty-three, if the belt did all that 
was promised for it, there should be no reason why I might 
not live forty years or more yet. So I gave the belt a good 
chance. I wore it faithfully for three months, and tried to 
help it by covering myself in every likely spot with porous 
plasters. In that condition I went about my business, clad 
in a kind of coat armor to fight microbes. I tried to per- 
suade myself that I was doing exactly the right thing, and 
set to work to find enjoyment among my roses, and to forget 
my troubles. 

But it was of no use. My limbs did not consider that 
much enjoyment. The microbes were unhappy, and would 
not be appeased. They gave me no rest. They tortured 
me unceasingly, and finally they drove me back in despair 
and desperation to my bed. I tried strong vinegar ; friends 
recommended mustard plasters, so mustard plasters were 
tried. I covered every painful spot with them, and suffered 
tortures, with no relief. I am ashamed of myself when I 
think that I ever listened to such advice, and descended to 
such folly. So now all had failed. Medicines had reduced 
me to the lowest condition of weakness and disease. I had 


swallowed poisons till they had no longer any effect upon 
me. Electric belts, lotions, plasters, blisters, every thing, 
internal and external, had proved useless. I was worse than 
ever, with no resource untried, and no longer a particle of 
faith in any thing that doctors, proprietary-medicine makers, 
or advertisers could offer me, and I refused further advice. 

But this refusal lasted only for a time. A drowning man 
will catch at a straw. A friend came along who suggested 
a massage operator. He told me that one of these rubbing 
doctors had cured him of rheumatism, so my determination 
failed me, and my hopes were renewed. I thought the sug- 
gestion over philosophically. I had tried medicines internally 
and externally to no purpose, but. here was something dif- 
ferent. It was not medicine of any kind, there were no 
poisons nor plasters, and I convinced myself that I should 
try it. Well, I went to the man's office, and he lost no time 
in getting to work. He rubbed and pounded and drove his 
thumbs into my flesh till I roared with pain, and cried to 
heaven that he would not kill me. He told me to bear it, 
that he would rid of me all my pains if only I would endure 
the inconvenience for a time. So I clinched my teeth to- 
gether, and told him to go on. He went on, and he con- 
tinued his practice on me for about five minutes, poking and 
pounding and straining my joints, until I could bear it no 
longer. I jumped out of bed, gave him five dollars, and 
hastened home, content to die, and solemnly swearing to 
myself that I would never again submit to such cruel and 
barbarous treatment. 

The frame of mind to which I was then reduced is not 
easy to describe, and, except by those who have been simi- 
larly placed, it cannot be imagined. I was depressed and 
ill. I again thought over the fate of my children, and how 
they had been sacrificed to ignorance and incompetency. I 
saw before me no better or different prospect for myself. I 
had given up all hope. There seemed nothing further to 
be done. All the usual resources of sick persons had been 
tried, and they had failed. I was steadily getting worse, 
growing weaker, and suffering more. I had tried every thing 

fcfc I 

L_. ' !-.i 



.' ;> 





that medical science offered, and I became so thoroughly 
discouraged that, in my despondency, I began to look upon 
it as nothing better than a fraud and a humbug. I saw 
healthy children fall sick and die, while medicine was 
powerless to relieve them, and, with my own condition ever 
fixed upon my mind, I began to think over past experiences 
in my business. 

I recalled much of the work that I had been called upon 
to do throughout my career, and in my management of 
flowers. I recalled the various drugs that I had been in the 
habit of using to destroy worms and fungi in plants. I 
thought over all that I had read of the experiences of nurs- 
erymen in dealing with blight in pear-trees and of the 
remedies that had been suggested ; I recalled to mind the 
sums of money I had thrown away in Texas only for the 
purchase of pest poisons to kill insects in cabbages alone. 
I had experimented in and tried all the remedies that had 
been recommended to kill fungi and destroy dry rot, mildew, 
and other diseases in grape-vines. I bethought me 'again 
how I had offered a reward of one thousand dollars for 
something that would destroy cabbage blight without injur- 
ing the cabbage, when soon General Ruggels and Captain 
Warner appeared at my grounds ready, as they said, to earn 
the prize. Their plan was not new, and if they had had as 
much knowledge about what they were doing as the veriest 
tyro in chemistry would have had, they would have known 
how absurd their proposition was. However, I gave them 
a chance to test their alleged discovery. A cabbage was 
selected which was covered with blight, and an old kerosene 
can was placed over it. One spoonful of sulphur was then 
put underneath in a small saucer and ignited, the fumes 
being allowed to fill the can. Five minutes later we ex- 
amined the plant, and, sure enough, every insect, every por- 
tion of the blight was effectually killed, but the cabbage, too, 
was as dead as a door-nail. 

When that little experiment came back to my mind, it 
occurred to me that it was an excellent illustration of the 
effect of medicine, which, while it destroys the microbes, 


kills the patient too, the patient being usually the first to 
succumb. It led me again to think over my own garden 
experiences, and the conviction became deeply impressed 
on my mind that, if I could discover any thing that would 
kill blight, fungi, and microbes on plants without injuring 
them, I should also be in possession of something that would 
cure me. I felt that I had had large experience, that I had 
been a careful and close observer of Nature and her opera- 
tions, and was positively assured of the causes, to some extent, 
that led to the production of plant diseases. I knew that 
all the various kinds of fungus, or micro-organism, which 
produce rot, mildew, etc., appear more frequently at changes 
of the weather, and that whenever we had rain in spring 
after a bright sunshine, disease would make its appearance 
on the grape-vines within twenty-four hours. 

The effect thus so quickly apparent was as if some one 
had sprinkled the leaves with some kind of poison. At first, 
little red spots became visible. These gradually, yet rapidly, 
grew 'larger, and spread until they covered the leaves and 
extended to the fruit, and in about three weeks it was pos- 
sible to determine how the crop would be affected. Having 
used so many medicines and drugs on myself, there were 
almost the contents of a drug-store accumulated in my 
laboratory, and so, with the help of my garden books and a 
small microscope, I set to work to investigate the matter 
more closely. First of all, I examined about forty varieties 
of grapes that were at my disposal. Some of them were 
more infested than others. Several were not attacked at 
all, and others very slightly, so that they soon recovered 
and lost all evidence of disease. Among those least diseased 
were the Delawares, Concords, and a few others, and these 
I could always depend upon, but the Black Spanish, Tokay, 
and all the California varieties were easy victims to the 
fungus. There was abundant material upon which to ex- 
periment, and I began with all the remedies that had been 
suggested by the Agricultural Department at Washington 
in the articles published from that office on the diseases of 


the vine, but with little or no effect. If I used the drugs 
sparingly they failed to destroy the fungus, and if I used 
them more liberally they killed the vine, or, at the best, they 
destroyed the fruit and the leaves. I found prevention to 
be better than cure, and that the disease was kept away 
either by putting a roof over the vine or covering the grapes 
with a paper bag, thus warding off rain and dew. Noting 
the temperature and condition of the atmosphere, and the 
effects of sudden changes of the weather on my vines, I 
observed that, when these were greatest, there was also more 
coughing and more sickness among the people. Common- 
sense, and no great exercise of reason, led me to see that 
the same causes had operated in both cases, and that the 
human race suffered from the same influences as those which 
brought disease to the plants and to the vegetable world. 
All organic life is, in fact, affected in the same way, and al- 
though it has frequently been observed that in what are 
called unhealthy seasons the crops of fruit and cereals are 
likely to be inferior, yet the observation has never before 
been given its full practical import. 

From the grape-vines I turned my attention to straw- 
berries, and there I found similar enemies. Worms, large 
and small, were on them, destroying alike fruit, leaves, and 
roots, besides large quantities of bacteria and fungi that 
were no less injurious. A group of geraniums might be ap- 
parently in perfect health, and in twenty-four hours the 
enemy would come in upon them like yellow-fever upon the 
people. I could go through a garden of flowers and not 
only demonstrate all this readily, but prove, without much 
difficulty, that each variety has a host of enemies that 
destroys it. 

In the open air there is great difficulty in contending 
against these enemies. It is not so easy to bring plants 
under the immediate influence of the remedies, and exposure 
to the atmosphere makes them, of course, more liable to any 
deleterious effects ; but in the greenhouse very much can be 
done if the plants are attended to in time. 


Flowers go through the same processes and functions as 
man. They take nourishment, and die as he does. They 
need air, food, and water; they suffer from disease, go 
through various phases of health, and are subject to similar 
disturbances as those which afflict men and animals. Res- 
piration is as essential to them as to us. Changes are con- 
stantly going on in their tissues, and fluids circulate through 
them in constant directions, and even with considerable 
force. In some of the lower forms of vegetable life there is 
a still stronger resemblance to animal forms. The so-called 
thread-plants, which comprise many fungi and lichens, are 
often nothing more than a series of cells, sometimes inter- 
woven, sometimes in lines ; but their mode of receiving 
nourishment is instructive and very interesting in this con- 
sideration. All the higher orders of plants live for the most 
part on inorganic matter. They require for their sustenance 
water, ammonia or nitrogen, and carbonic acid, and in ab- 
sorbing the latter they decompose it and give out oxygen. 
But the fungi take nourishment very differently. They 
require organic food. They cannot form their tissues out 
of the elements that are necessary or sufficient for the 
higher plants. They take into their systems carbon com- 
pounds already formed. In other words, they live upon the 
plants or animals to which they attach themselves, and they 
absorb oxygen from the atmosphere and give out carbonic 
acid as animals do. 

The older botanists held that one of the distinctions 
between plants and animals was the power to form starch, 
which exists in the former and not in the latter, but fungi 
never form starch, and in that respect again they more 
nearly resemble animal life. Neither do they form the 
peculiar coloring matter which we find in the leaves of 
higher organizations, so that in many respects they justify 
us in regarding them as something very different from ordi- 
nary vegetable growths. This enables us to appreciate more 
fully the evil that they are capable of when they attach 
themselves to other bodies. 


I may emphasize this still further. Recent investigations 
have shown that even lichens are not simple or individual 
growths, but that each one consists of two parts, the one 
being a low form of alga, and the other a parasitic fungus. 
The algae constitute that form of vegetable life which is 
found in the rocks of the earliest formations, and they were 
probably for many centuries of ages the chief, if not the 
only, organic bodies on the earth, except similar forms that 
would be contained in the waters. They vary in size from 
a minute species far smaller than a blood-corpuscle to others 
that are several hundred feet in length, and it is generally 
accepted that they form a very large proportion of the 

Those persons who, crossing the North Atlantic in its 
southern part, have had the good-fortune to traverse the 
Sargosso Sea, know what these forms of vegetable life may 
become when fully developed and massed in large fields. 
Residents on the sea-shore are familiar with them in the 
sea-weed that is ever being washed up from the ocean, and 
people whose homes are in the interior know of them as the 
green slime that forms on stagnant pools or ditches, or the 
slimy matter that may be found on wood in damp places, or 
the fine thread-like bodies that occur in ponds and rivers of 
fresh water everywhere. All varieties of algae originated 
from a single cell, and, however large, they are of the 
simplest construction. Sometimes they are extremely beau- 
tiful, and of colors varying from purple and bright-scarlet to 
sombre brown. 

Everybody who has ever given particular attention to the 
various lichens to be found in the woods is acquainted with 
the beauties which they present, but in that respect the salt- 
water algae far surpass them. The latter are, however, of a 
higher class, the one constituent of the lichen being a low 
form of the primitive organization. The other constituent 
of the lichen is, as I have said, a fungus. It is a parasite* 
and obtains its nourishment, not from inorganic matter, but 
from the alga. Look at any well-developed lichen, such as 


may be found on old wood or on unhealthy trees anywhere 
in the country. There will generally be seen two distinct 
portions, one green, brown, yellow, black, or at any rate 
colored ; the other, white or more or less colorless. The 
former belongs to the alga, the latter to the fungus, yet the 
two are intimately connected and interwoven, and were 
once supposed to be but a single organization. The value 
of these bodies in nature is very great. They form on the 
driest and most desolate spots. The lava in volcanic regions 
becomes covered with them. The alga derives its nourish- 
ment from moisture and the air, the fungus appropriates 
nourishment from the body to which it is attached. The 
growth of the lichen tends" to disintegrate the rock, and by 
death and decay to constitute the first beginning of a soil 
in which in future times plants of a higher organization may 
grow and flourish. 

Thus the relations between animals and plants are very 
intimate, and if we would know how to treat disease in the 
former, we must study it in the latter. If we would cure 
members of the human family, let us see how disease affects 
the vegetable world, and ascertain if we can what remedial 
agents are necessary and safe there. If in our experiments 
we kill a few plants, the loss is not very great, but if in the 
same way human life be sacrificed, the process becomes a 
serious one. Human lives and human health are sacrificed 
in this way by doctors to build up medical science. When 
a new drug is introduced, its value, or rather its properties, 
are unknown. Experiments on animals are first undertaken, 
but these are only tentative, they are necessarily not conclu- 
sive, and then experiments are begun upon the human body. 
These may be conducted in hospitals where the patients are 
poor and it is not deemed of much importance whether they 
live or die, but physicians often practise them upon private 
patients. How many people have fallen victims to chloro- 
form, morphine, antipyrine, cocaine, aconitine, and other 
powerful and dangerous agents before their properties were 
fully known ! Even when they are supposed to be known, 




the action of them and other drugs is so excessive that lives 
are frequently sacrificed inadvertently. But the law protects 
the doctors in these proceedings, and when death occurs 
it is regarded only as a tribute to science. Just as we have 
instances where autopsies are held and people are cut to 
pieces before it is certain that they are dead, as in the case 
of Mr. Bishop, and all to serve the cause of medical science. 

In experimenting on plants there is no such risk, and when 
we shall have found something which will destroy microbes 
without injury to the plant we may safely test it on the 
human body. I have mentioned the proposal that was 
made to win the one thousand dollars that I offered as a re- 
ward for something that would kill the cabbage bugs ; and it 
ruined the cabbage. If that same experiment had been tried 
with a child, it would most certainly have killed the child. 
The product obtained by burning sulphur in air is sulphurous 
acid. This has bleaching properties and disinfecting power, 
and no animal life can exist in it. Its use as a disinfectant 
depends on that property. It is in truth a deadly poison 
when taken in full strength into the lungs. To use it there- 
fore on mankind in that way would be simply criminal, 
whereas an experiment with a plant is justifiable and useful. 
It may be inferred with tolerable certainty that if any agent 
that is offered to us has no deleterious effects on vegetable 
life, it will not be very hazardous to test it on the human 

All my early life was passed amid flowers. I was engaged 
in their cultivation ; I learned their habits and their needs; 
I watched their lives ; I studied them in health and noted care- 
ful observations about their diseases ; I experimented, and 
it will be well if I give some of my experiences and how 
I went to work to try and cure fungi. 

If plants are kept as nearly as possible in their native con- 
dition, with good soil from which to obtain their nourish- 
ment and in a pure atmosphere and an equable and 
proper temperature ; if, too, they are raised from healthy 

stock, they are not subject to disease. Fungi cannot readily 


get a foothold on them. So a child, the offspring of healthy 
parents and a sturdy ancestry, properly fed, kept in whole- 
some surroundings, sheltered from extremes of heat and 
cold in a climate that is neither too hot nor too dry, and 
protected from contact with disease of others, is not very 
likely to grow up unhealthy or to be subject to any 
serious illness. But if plants are chilled or kept too warm ; 
if the soil be allowed to parch or to become too wet ; if no 
sunlight be permitted to have access to them, or if they be 
propagated from sickly stock, they will soon become the 
resting-place of microbes, which will accumulate upon them 
in masses and very soon render the sickly flower a seat of the 
most fatal disease. Take a plant so circumstanced and let 
a doctor try the effect of his drugs and chemicals, if he suc- 
ceed in killing the fungi he will also assuredly destroy the 
life of the plant; but the chances are that he cannot kill the 
micro-organisms, and if he cannot destroy them in a flower, 
be sure that he cannot do any better when they are in the 
human system. He cannot cure disease then, which is the 
same thing. 

I have applied drugs, both directly and indirectly, to the 
fungus, and in my selection I was at first guided by a 
knowledge of what physicians use for destroying microbes 
in their patients. Dusting them over the affected parts of 
the plants I found the following to be worthless : Sulphur, 
borax, boracic acid, salicylic acid, camphor, tannic acid, 
acetic acid, tartaric acid, alum, bluestone, Paris green, white 
hellebore, calomel, saltpetre, Epsom salts, lime, and various 
salts of potassium and sodium. Many of these, if not all, are 
employed by doctors in the treatment of diseases which the 
doctors themselves attribute to the presence of micro- 
organisms, yet they will not kill those same bodies on a 
plant ; how, then, can they destroy them in the body ? 

But fungi on plants may be killed. They yield to the 
direct application of nitric, carbolic, and sulphuric acids, 
ammonia, copperas or sulphate of iron, muriatic and chromic 
acids, phosphorous and sulphurous acids, and some of their 


compounds. Oil of turpentine and mustard, benzoine, 
kerosine, and bisulphide of carbon also destroy them, and 
the plants also. 

Now every one of these things is used by physicians, and 
it cannot be doubted that they are highly dangerous. In 
fact they kill more than they cure ; possibly they do not cure 
any, although they have the credit for it, and physicians use 
them ignorantly. 

I once obtained some eminently practical results, which 
led me to further experiments, whereby fungi were checked 
in their reproduction by putting some of those poisonous 
drugs into bottles and so arranging them that only gaseous 
matter could intermingle with the air. But I felt the poi- 
sonous effects in my lungs, and I found that under this 
influence some of the tender leaves of the plants turned 
black, and I was very glad to give up those experiments. 
Even a very dense tobacco smoke will sometimes be 
injurious to tender flowers. When the air was warm and 
moist I found that fungoid growths appeared everywhere, 
and multiplied with astonishing rapidity. Under the same 
conditions milk turns sour very rapidly, meat shows evi- 
dence of fermentation, strawberries and other fruits become 
rapidly covered with micro-organisms, which spoil them 
quickly, and the microbes in my own body at the same time 
became lively so that I would have to lie down and protect 
myself from the changes. Then at other times, especially 
after thunder-storms, no 'fungi were formed, and I too felt 
better, breathing more easily and being more free from pain. 
At the same time, too, meat and milk would keep longer, 
and many forms of fungus disappeared, while my plants 
always looked better, and were more full of life. 

This observation opened my eyes. My reason told me 
that I must look for that something which purified the air 
and removed the germs of fungi and disease, acting so pow- 
erfully and yet so harmlessly to the higher organs of life, 
for its action was far more powerful than that of all the 
poisonous drugs I had before used. I felt certain that here- 


in lay the key to my remedy. But to identify it absolutely, 
to make it artificially, and then to apply it correctly, were 
problems that occupied my attention for more than a year 
after. My former experiments had shown me that powerful 
drugs had little or no effect if applied externally to plants 
or trees, or if dusted on fruits. I found also that sprinkling 
and washing pear-trees which had blight were very little 
good, and that even pruning and cutting off diseased parts 
gave at best but temporary relief, because no sooner was it 
done than other parts became diseased, and by pruning away 
all the dead matter there was soon nothing but the stump 
left, and then that too died. 

This very much resembles what happens in the exercise 
of " scientific surgery," where limbs or diseased portions are 
cut away and the disease breaks out again, so that the 
patient dies from constant operations unless the microbes 
are left undisturbed to fulfil their mission. Of course we 
all know that surgical operations are often successful, but 
those are mostly cases of severe injury where it is necessary 
to remove the injured portion. It is very different when the 
operation is undertaken to remove parts that are diseased 
from the presence of micro-organisms, or fungi, or microbes, 
as, for example, cancer. To cure a tree of tendency to ' 
blight it is necessary to go to the roots. Most persons know 
that flowers which grow luxuriantly are less subject to blight 
than others whose growth is slower and whose appearance is 
sickly. We must then furnish the tree with better food and 
drink, that will enter into the sap, pass through the tissues and 
produce a condition where bacteria will not live. As soon 
as I did this to my trees their green color returned, they 
threw out fresh shoots, put on a more vigorous growth, and 
presented no further necessity for cutting off the limbs. 

The organs of the body are similar in functions to por- 
tions of the tree. In plants every cell is a stomach. Nour- 
ishment is taken up by the roots. It passes upwards through 
certain portions of the stem to the leaves. There it is 
assimilated, and thence it passes downwards, forming depos- 




its of new cells over the old wood underneath the bark. 
While therefore the plant breathes through its leaves, yet 
if we would reach them internally we must go first to the 
roots. We cannot improve and enrich the sap in any other 
way. So in man we supply food and nourishment through 
the stomach, and fresh air through the lungs, if we would 
send a color to the cheeks and promote the health of the 
person. It is the stomach that we purify and strengthen 
first of all, and the nerves, blood-vessels, muscles, and all 
other tissues derive the benefit. 



FURTHER reference to the subject-matter of the preced- 
ing pages must be made when I come to an explanation of 
the principle by which I would cure disease without drugs. 
All medicines that are employed to-day, whether inorganic 
or organic, should be antiseptics that is, agents capable of 
preventing fermentation. Now there are many such in use 
by the medical profession, and in order that there shall be 
no misunderstanding I will advert to one or two of the most 
characteristic. First of all is bichloride of mercury, an 
agent so powerful that it can only be administered inter- 
nally in minute doses, and which even then, and with the 
closest watching, produces poisonous effects. 

It is, as its name indicates, a corrosive poison, destroy- 
ing the lining membrane of the stomach, producing a sense 
of heat with much pain in the throat, and a strong metallic 
taste in the mouth, accompanied by severe vomiting and a 
feeling of constriction wherever it has acted on the mucous 
membrane. If death be not induced, in a few hours saliva- 
tion follows, and sometimes the functions of the kidneys are 

Salicylic acid is also an antiseptic, but serious conse- 
quences have sometimes followed its use. The poisonous 
qualities of carbolic acid are well known. It is one of the 
most powerful corrosive poisons known, and yet druggists 
distribute it freely and will sell it to anybody who asks for 



it. A case is recorded by Dr. Billroth, of Vienna, where a 
patient lost four fingers by gangrene produced through the 
application of carbolic acid to a trifling wound. Its effects 
are very rapid. A marine hospital steward swallowed a 
small quantity by mistake, and was dead within three min- 
utes, and a case is mentioned in Philadelphia where a man 
entered a drug store, purchased a very small quantity of the 
strong acid, drank it, and was dead before he could leave the 
store. Moreover, carbolic acid is not as powerful a germi- 
cide as some other things in use by the profession. 

Permanganate of potash is so active that one grain in 
twenty-four hours is a full dose. lodoform, nitrate of silver 
(common caustic), are also in use, and arsenic is a favorite 
antiseptic. Two grains of arsenious acid have proved fatal, 
and a fourth of a grain may produce poisonous symptoms. 
Arsenic is the basis of many quack preparations and forms 
the active agent in complexion wafers, cancer plasters and 
ointments, and of many compounds that are sold in unlim- 
ted quantities in the stores and by advertising adventurers. 
It is an accumulative poison. Its effects may not be injuri- 
ously apparent until it has been used for some time, and they 
then appear in full severity, producing symptoms not unlike 
Asiatic cholera, only with more pain. Thirst is intense, con- 
sciousness usually remains to the last, but not always, and con- 
vulsions, tetanus, and severe vomiting often precede a state 
of collapse and death. 

Besides the injurious effects produced upon the tissues and 
the system generally, even where no seriously poisonous re- 
sults follow, many of these poisons are injurious to the teeth 
and to the appearance of the skin ; another fact which should 
militate against their use. All are antiseptics of more or less 
power, but what is wanted is an antiseptic that can do no 
injury to the patient, but which shall at the same time be 
effectual and of such a nature that it may be taken in large 
quantities, so as to thoroughly saturate the tissues. It must 
be capable of absorption, so that it will enter the blood. It 
must be adapted to check, for instance, such damage on the 


blood corpuscles as I previously explained to have been 
observed in malaria, where the parasitic microbe acts di- 
rectly upon the vital fluid and destroys the corpuscles by 
attaching itself to them and absorbing them as it were into 
itself. It must be fitted to take part in the circulation with- 
out poisonous effects, and yet to be so destructive of microbe 
life that it will at once destroy it, and in that way free the 
system of all germs of disease. 

My experience, coupled with all the inquiries I have been 
able to make, convinces me that physicians have never yet 
discovered any drug that is as harmless as water and yet as 
powerful in the right way as any of those agents I have men- 
tioned from among the list 'of poisons. They can have no 
such medicine, for if they had they could cure disease, and 
that they certainly cannot do, for persons die long before 
they get old, and they should not do that if the diseases to 
which they are subject are curable. I have tested most of 
the drugs in general use with a view to ascertain whether 
they have any real power over the existence of micro-organ- 
isms independently of other properties, because a drug may 
be a very powerful poison and still not be an antiseptic ; and 
I have found that not one half the agents mentioned in 
medical works, or of the formulas recommended from time 
to time in medical periodicals, have any antiseptic properties 
at all. In a large number of instances the whiskey or alco- 
hol used in the manufacture of tinctures and other prepara- 
tions plays the most important part, and it is used, in fact, 
itself as an antiseptic to preserve the drug from fermenta- 
tion in other words, to destroy or keep away fungi and 
microbes. This is of the utmost importance, since a drug 
that is in the process of fermentation is no medicine. It has 
no curative properties. The more of it that passes into the 
stomach the more fermentation goes on in the system, and 
disease is rather increased than diminished. But if you can 
find a preparation that does not ferment even if your sick- 
ness increases, and which you can take into the stomach 
in large quantities and continuously for weeks and months, 



so that the blood and the whole system become saturated 
with it, then you have a good medicine and one in which you 
may place full confidence. But, as I said before, you may go 
over the whole Pharmacopoeia, and examine the catalogues of 
drugs that are in use or for sale, and you will not find one 
that fills these requirements. 

My inquiries into Nature's processes and into the remedies 
in use for treatment of disease in both plants and animals 
have not been superficial. I have gone into them deeply. 
My studies have not been restricted and I have exercised 
my thoughts carefully, so that I feel that I can enter into 
Nature's mysteries understandingly and to some practical 

Knowing that fermentation goes on in the stomach, I felt 
the value of discovering something that would stop that 
process. I placed some of the contents of my own stomach 
into a bottle, and I found that the process of fermentation 
continued, and that microbes were multiplied and propagated, 
and flourished exceedingly. This showed to me as plainly as 
is the sun at noonday that the same process goes on in the 
stomach. I, from time to time, added different medicines to 
the same, and still the fermentation was not checked. The 
microbes grew in spite of the medicine, telling me that this 
was useless as a curative agent. Under such circumstances 
it became no longer any source of wonder to me that I did 
not get well, or that instead of improving I steadily became 
worse. When people are sick, it is not money that they care 
for. The cost of drugs and the doctor's fees are a second- 
ary consideration, but when disease is not stopped they be- 
come discouraged. Their pain and suffering continue, and 
money is of little consequence to one who feels that if he 
cannot get help death is before him. I write this book 
for the benefit of the public and their welfare, feeling that 
the world is my country, mankind my brethren, and to 
do good is my religion. 

In this spirit I have advanced thus far, and in the same I 
shall proceed to tell what I know. Possibly some persons 


may be offended ; perhaps I may be the means of injuring 
the business of some. If so I cannot help it ; let them fol- 
low some other occupation, for there is much to do in the 
world, and bread for all who will do it. My purpose is to 
give the truth of my own experience and knowledge regard- 
less of consequences to all who are not pursuing an equally 
open and straightforward course. 

I have often felt pain in the stomach, either from over- 
eating or from drinking too much water, and then I almost 
always get relief with whiskey. This shows that good 
whiskey or alc*ohol will stand the test ; but if whiskey or 
alcohol be mixed with water, fermentation is not stopped. 
Drugs are now generally* preserved in alcohol or whiskey, 
these in a pure state being the most harmless of antiseptics. 
But give a patient a pint of alcohol in twelve hours and you 
not only intoxicate him, you kill him. It is not desirable to 
give it as an antiseptic, and I regret to have to place it in 
the list with them, because it creates a taste for spirits, 
which is not desirable, and people are too much addicted to 
them already. But common-sense will tell most people that 
even alcohol is less harmful than morphia, chloroform, or 
the ordinary poisons and antiseptics known to physicians. 
If they doubt this let them go into some of the Prohibition 
States, where morphia and opium are taking the place of 
whiskey, which the law forbids, and a worse state of things is 
fast growing up than that which existed under the old law. 
Morphia and chloroform are excellent microbe killers. If we 
could use them freely as water no other medicine would be 

Finding, then, that alcohol was a powerful antiseptic, 
and knowing that it is derived from the vegetable kingdom, 
from fruit, grain, rice, potatoes, and any thing that contains 
starch or sugar, I made raids upon my garden and 
the prairies. I gathered up every kind of plant that had 
any aromatic properties, and extracted the oil. I took a 
similar extract by grinding up onions, sage, thyme, toma- 
toes, and various other fruits and vegetables as well as 


leaves. In fact, I refused nothing that offered me any kind 
of juice, oil, or extract which would not ferment when 
mixed with a sufficient quantity of water to be rendered 
harmless in the stomach when taken in large doses. But I 
was not successful. I did not find any thing that would 
answer my purpose. The more I worked, the more I ex- 
perimented, the more convinced I became that there was no 
medicine to be found in that way which would kill the 
microbe and stop fermentation without killing the patient ; 
and that is what the doctors told me when I first introduced 
the microbe killer to public notice. 

However, I was now thoroughly disheartened. All my 
efforts had failed ; all my experiments had proved fruitless, 
except to give me negative results and to tell me I had 
undertaken something that could not be accomplished. I 
lay down to die. I felt that there was no cure for me, no 
hope that I could get better. I had tried every thing that 
friends or physicians or my own reason could suggest, and 
all to no purpose. My weight had fallen from one hundred 
and ninety pounds to one hundred and forty-four. My 
energies were exhausted and my spirits were depressed. 
But the subject still occupied my mind, and my rest seemed 
to stimulate my brain. I thought over the matter inces- 
santly, until at last something happened which had not pre- 
viously occurred to me. Nature had so often told me how 
she purifies the air, what the effects of a thunder-storm are, 
that it was nothing for me to go to her once more for instruction 
and advice. I asked myself the question : What is air? Is 
it nothing more than oxygen, nitrogen, carbonic acid, am- 
monia, and water, with electricity pervading all ? And if 
there be any thing more, what is it ? and how can we make 
it ? I turned these questions over in my mind constantly. 
I knew that there was pure air up in the mountains. I heard 
of oxygen treatment, hydropathy, water cure, electricity, and 
I read of doctors, or professed doctors, who practised them, 
so I concluded that there must be something in the sugges- 
tion. On this I set to work once more. I examined each 


theory separately, and prepared several forms of apparatus 
before I arrived at that which we now use. My success did 
not come all at once. I abandoned my plans three times, 
as each combination failed, but I felt that it was a case of 
life or death, that I must either succeed or die, so I put all 
my energies into it, and persevered, with the result that at 
last I had in my possession the means of killing microbes 
that had all the requirements I had specified. I found a 
combination which was perfectly harmless to the person 
taking it, and which kills microbes with certainty ; also one 
which is quite different from any thing hitherto numbered 
among curative agents. I tested it fully, and assured my- 
self of its properties and powers. 

I tried it upon myself, and the effects became apparent 
almost immediately. I increased the dose gradually until I 
found how much best suited me ; then I persevered, and the 
effects showed themselves promptly. Peculiar sensations 
were felt all over me, but especially in the most afflicted 
regions, as though the microbes were shifting about my 
body, but there were no bad effects whatever. My stomach 
became clean. Fermentation ceased. My appetite im- 
proved, and digestion was good. I increased the dose from 
three to six wineglassfuls a day, and grew weaker. My 
energies failed me, and I became depressed. Consequently 
I stopped taking the microbe killer for a few days till my 
stomach recovered itself, and then I renewed the treatment, 
but regulated the doses by my feelings. For a long time I 
felt very ill, some days being worse than others, but this was 
readily accounted for by the low and weak condition to 
which I had been reduced, and my state of nervous depres- 
sion was extreme. The microbes that were in my body 
probably did not like the treatment, and they seemed to be 
constantly moving about, but I knew that I had something 
which could not hurt me, and I persevered steadily. I knew 
from my garden experience how difficult it is to get rid of 
weeds and to cure blight and fungi from the plants, especially 
when they have been allowed to get ahead and to increase 
and flourish undisturbed. 


My blood must have been teeming with microbes which 
had been propagating and increasing for years, and it would 
have been folly for me to expect to get rid of them in less 
than twelve months. My disease had become chronic. It 
had remained so long that it had almost grown to be a part 
of my system, a part of my constitution, and it is always 
difficult to eradicate any disease in that condition. But I 
had hope, and my hope had grown into confidence. All my 
experiments came back to me now and assured me that I 
was in the way to get well, if such a way existed. So I went 
on, and so favorable was my progress that at the end of 
three months I felt almost a new man. I was considerably 
better. I had no longer any attacks of rheumatism, and the 
fever had abated so much that I felt only the slightest symp- 
toms of its approach. Sometimes I laughed to myself at 
the extraordinary cure, and at the thought that a disease 
that had defied all physicians, all drugs and remedies that 
could be suggested, all the advice of friends and the rub- 
bings of massage-doctors, should be got rid of by drinking 
water. My appetite became so ravenous, and my digestive 
powers so strong, that I could eat several pounds of meat 
daily, and it increased my strength rapidly. My nervous 
prostration ceased, my energies returned, no pains annoyed 
me, I slept well, my mind became more acute, and there 
was every evidence of an improved condition and much en- 
richment of the blood. Of course my friends could not fail 
to observe the change, but for a time they were puzzled to 
think what was the matter with me. I kept the matter secret 
for a long time, for I did not wish to offend my friends or 
disturb the equanimity of the good doctors who had so long 
and so faithfully administered to the welfare of my microbes. 
Six months after I had taken the first dose of microbe killer 
I felt myself entirely cured of the rheumatism. There were 
no more pains whatever of any kind. The fever had also 
entirely gone, and the piles were gradually disappearing 
and were almost well. I then weighed 144 pounds, and 
had the appearance presented in the picture from a photo- 
graph on the opposite page. My weight now is 205 


pounds. I felt weak throughout the first year, especially at 
times, but this was to be expected after the length of time 
that I had been ill. My blood had become thin and was 
reduced to a very bad condition, so it required a long while 
to be restored, and the system did not seem capable of 
restoring it as fast as the medicine removed the microbes. 

When I first experienced an improvement I was curious 
to know how the microbe killer would act in other diseases, 
but I had some fears. I thought : " Suppose I give my 
remedy to some patient who is under the care of a doctor, 
and suppose he should die from the poisons that that 
physician would be giving him ; the blame might be charged 
to my bottle, and I might get indicted for manslaughter." 

I knew such cases had happened, and I was well aware that 
the doctors or their organization would be but too glad to 
get hold of me, and to put me in just such a position. They 
do not tolerate any interference from outside their own 
body, and although they themselves may kill, they do not 
allow other people even to cure if they can help it. How- 
ever, I determined to manufacture and sell my medicine, 
and to make a business of it, feeling sure that it would be 
profitable ; but still, and the more on this account, I did 
not feel disposed to get myself into any trouble. I thought 
so much of my discovery that I dreamed of it, and one night 
it seemed to me that the people must have it. After that I 
could not resist asking my workmen if they knew of any sick 
persons around the neighborhood. "Yes," said a negro ; " I 

know a man, George P , who has consumption pretty 

bad. His sister will probably die of it soon, for his whole 
family have died of it." " Well," I thought, " if that man 
dies nobody can blame me," so I determined to take the 
risk, and I gave orders to have the man brought to me. He 
came, and I saw a mere skeleton. The man had wasted away 
almost to the bones. He was pale and bloodless, with 
sunken eyes, and the hectic flush peculiar to phthisis. He 
was worn out with a cough, and reduced to a terrible degree 
of weakness. Death was staring him in the face, and he well 




understood that the doctors held out no hope for him. I 
talked to him, and told him that I would give him some- 
thing to cure him. I explained that it had cured me, and I 
was in a condition little better than his own. I advised him 
how to use the water, and requested him to come around 
again soon and let me know how it worked. . 

Another of my men told me of a woman who for six 
months had been under a doctor's care, suffering from a 
large growth and much pain in one of her breasts, and she 
wished also to try the preparation. But I explained to the 
man that I could not give it for any such purpose, because 
if the woman should die I should incur an awful legal 
responsibility. At the same time if he wanted to take a 
gallon there was one in the adjoining room. The gallon 
soon disappeared, and I consoled myself with the thought 
that if the woman died I could conscientiously swear that I 
did not give her the water, as the old man took it. Well, 

at the end of three weeks George P made his appearance 

again at my house with an empty jug, and he wanted it filled 
again. He complained of pains shifting around in the 
neighborhood of his waist, but said that otherwise he felt 
generally much better. I let him understand that such a 
disease as his could not be got rid of all at once, and that 
he must bear patiently all that came, for he had given up 
all thought of being cured and had reconciled himself to the 
belief that he must die. At the same time I pointed out to 
him that I had also abandoned all hope of being cured, and 
thought a speedy death was inevitable, but I had been cured 
by means of this same preparation, and I could see no 
reason why his chances were not at least as good as mine. 
He went away encouraged and continued the treatment. 
Soon after a messenger came from the woman for more 
medicine, and assured me that the fearful pains she 
formerly suffered had almost subsided. This gave me 
courage. I became now quite fearless and gave her a 
second bottle, which in due time sufficed to cure her. The 
man improved steadily, but his sister under the doctor's 


care died. In a short time I had twenty female patients in 
Austin, Texas, one with a cancer on the tongue, which dis- 
appeared after she had used three gallons. Three of these 
ladies had been given up by the doctors, who saw no possi- 
bility of lengthening their lives except by an operation. 
Certificates from these patients have been published in the 
Austin papers, and some equally valuable appear in my 
pamphlet, " History of the Microbe Killer," which is given 
away by all my agents. 

My plan was this : I used persuasion and advocated per- 
severance. No matter how low the patient might be, I in- 
duced him not to give up taking the remedy. I merely 
required them to discharge their doctor and not to use any 
other medicine, but to faithfully take the water, to let me 
know what progress they made from time to time, and on 
these conditions I undertook to supply all the medicine that 
was necessary. All, without a single exception, were cured, 
provided they came to me in good time. If the doctors 
abandoned them, and they died, no blame could attach to 
me, so I had nothing to fear from the medical profession. 
The cases that came to me were all different. Some had 
local diseases, others described their ailments as being gen- 
eral all over the body. They told me all they had done, the 
quantity of medicine they had taken without any effect, 
and the trouble and misery they had gone through. Some 
told me pitiful tales how all their money had been spent in 
doctors' bills and drugs until they were reduced to the last 
stage of poverty as well as disease. 

But notwithstanding my astonishing success in the treat- 
ment of all forms of disease that came to me, I was very 
reluctant to jump into the medicine business and to abandon 
my flowers, amid which I felt like a father among his 

During a stay of eighteen years in Texas I had improved 
thirty acres, and got a fine place and a comfortable home 
around me, such an one as is not often seen west of the 
Mississippi. I was fond of country life, gloried in my 

* *' f > 




flowers, fruits, and trees, loved to be among the birds and 
the fish, and felt all the enjoyment that belongs to the 
sportsman. There are health and pleasure in a life amid 
Nature's works which the city resident never enjoys, and I 
am happiest with them. There are anxieties and cares 
everywhere, but more independence in the cultivation of 
the soil than in any mercantile pursuit that can be followed ; 
and I was loath to give all this up for the toil, vexation, and 
trouble of such a career as would be before me if I entered 
upon the business that my successful discovery opened out 
before me. Moreover there were other inducements to 
keep me where I was. I had expended many thousands of 
dollars in improvements, such as are seldom seen in the 
nursery business. 

In addition to flowers I had gone into fish culture. I had 
five pools well stocked with German carp, and as my health 
improved I felt myself young again, more anxious than 
ever before to enjoy the pleasures of the life I had prepared 
for myself, and more enthusiastic also in my work. A steam 
pump supplied five hundred gallons of water per minute, 
and my fountains were filled with goldfish. The rosery 
contained a beautiful collection of the finest flowers, and 
thousands of people had come to admire it and to wander in 
amazement among acres of pear-trees, fruit-trees, and vines 
of all descriptions, and flowers without number growing in 
the greatest luxuriance under the warm southern sun. 

To a lover of nature the delights of such surroundings 
are more than it is easy to describe, and they are increased 
when is added the feeling that they are one's own production, 
the result of one's own conception and labor. It is no easy 
matter to tear one's self from such surroundings when they 
so thoroughly accord with the tastes and sympathies. 

I at that time supplied the Austin people with my medi- 
cine free of charge, first for fun, perhaps not realizing the 
value of my discovery. But the news leaked out. People 
began to talk about my medicine, and some of them came 
to my garden and begged with tears in their eyes to have 


some of the water. The wonders it had done were common 
gossip, and people were telling each other how this or that 
lady had been cured. I felt for these people, for my heart 
beats for my neighbors as brothers, and I had to neglect my 
garden and my flowers to manufacture the medicine for those 
around me. Thus the work of eighteen years was thrown 
away, for I am sorry to say that my garden is gone. I 
turned over my treasures to people who knew the value of 
money, and by whom the higher merit of such things is 
not understood. It was, however, a painful necessity. The 
continuous demand for my preparation forced me to leave 
the business that I had learned from my father, and it has 
led me into so much worry and excitement that I have many 
times regretted ever having made a business of it. Under 
my groves of vines and fruit-trees, in the companionship of 
my flowers, and amid the delightfully congenial surround- 
ings of my Texan home I had enjoyments which nothing 
since has compensated me for. 

My success with the medicine of course satisfies me that 
I must inflict a lasting injury upon medical science as it now 
is, and as a consequence thousands of physicians and others 
will become my enemies. Possibly I may be regarded as a 
very bad man, not because I have done any evil, but rather 
I think the reverse, but because I have done something dif- 
ferent from others, something that must interfere with their 
pursuits and prejudices, and with their present means of 
livelihood. That is the way of the world, and I will yet 
show the reader something of the kind of people there are 
about, and of the meannesses of which they will be guilty to 
put by the devil's help a few dollars into their own pockets. 

I know the world well enough to be quite aware that as 
soon as my discovery was well before the public, and its 
value known, there would be numberless imitations, num- 
berless thieves ready to steal my ideas, to counterfeit my 
remedy, and to try to damage my reputation. This last 
they cannot do, for my character as that of an honorable, 
hard-working citizen is too well established in the State of 


Texas, but they will try to make money out of the endeavor. 
I have led a quiet life, minding my own business, and not 
looking after other people's, and contests with the law or in 
the courts have never disturbed me. * The people in Austin 
had confidence in me, and my publications on horticultural 
topics made me well known, so that when the nature of my 
discovery leaked out I found it useless to try and keep it 
secret, and I published some account, first in the Austin 
Statesman of August 30, 1887. 

That was the first announcement made to the world that 
I had discovered a remedy that would cure disease, and of 
my theory that there is but one disease and one cause of 
disease, no matter how varied the symptoms in different 
cases may be. It was the first time, also, that I laid claim 
to being the only man that could prove these things, and 
who had experimental evidence of it gleaned from a study of 
Nature. I showed at that time that all disease is caused by 
microbes, and I described their organisms, producing at the 
same time testimonials from persons who had been cured, 
but who had been given up as incurable by the doctors. 
This created an excitement throughout the country, and it 
particularly stirred up the physicians who heard of it, and 
all interested in the medical profession. It was at this time 
that we first began to sell medicine in a business way. I 
kept up my publications, and almost every week I had 
printed testimonials and evidences of cure, occasionally, too, 
of very complicated diseases. I was not interfered with, for 
I killed nobody, and of course any man may cure another 
with water if he likes. 

There are no laws against curing or even treating another 
person, but if the person dies, then if the man who treated 
him be not a physician, protected by a piece of parchment, 
the case is one of manslaughter, and he is liable to surfer all 
the pains and penalties of that offence. When a person is 
sick he may put himself in the care of anybody he pleases, 
but if he happen to die, his attendant may possibly incur a 
punishment of lifelong imprisonment. That is the law 


here, and it prevails in Europe also. I therefore ran some 
risk, for although I knew that my medicine was not injuri- 
ous, yet the people who came to me for treatment were 
often in the advanced stages of disease, and if any of them 
had died while taking my medicine, there were plenty of 
doctors in the neighborhood ready to take advantage and to 
have me indicted for manslaughter. And it was not the 
doctors only, for success always creates jealousies, and there 
were people who, for reasons of their own, did not want me 
to succeed, and they too would have taken advantage of 
any opportunity to ruin me. 

My life at this period became very exciting, very different 
from the peaceful times I had had among my flowers. Peo- 
ple from all directions wrote to me for information, and 
sometimes they sent me a description of their ailments. 
These letters were marvels of composition. A person af- 
flicted with some chronic complaint perhaps must have sat 
down for half a day's work to describe all his troubles. 
Possibly he would fill half a dozen sheets of paper, and 
close his letter without having told any thing that an ordi- 
nary physician would have felt it necessary to know. But I 
knew that his symptoms were of secondary importance. 
They were interesting to have, but not essential, because all 
disease is due to the same cause, and requires but one cure. 

I could not make my correspondents always understand 
this. They had been accustomed to have the most minute 
inquiries made by their doctors, and they could not compre- 
hend how I could go to work and cure people without get- 
ting the minutest information and asking them an infinite 
lot of questions. They seemed to think it impossible that I 
could put up the right medicine without knowing every par- 
ticular, and perhaps some of them may have felt a little dis- 
trust on that account. But if their confidence failed them it 
was not to be wondered at. They had been deceived so often 
that they were naturally suspicious, and when people who 
wanted all details had failed and I undertook to cure with- 
out such minute information their suspicions were not likely 
to be lessened. I often had great difficulty in explaining 


this, and that I had only one remedy and one way of using 
it, which is all that is necessary since there can be but one 
cause of disease. 

Then again they could hardly believe that I who had my- 
self been so long a victim to disease, and who had been so often 
deceived, I, too, a nurseryman and florist, could have discov- 
ered a remedy which thousands of physicians and men of 
science had been looking for in vain. It perhaps seemed 
strange. There were men engaged in scientific studies, devo- 
ting their lives to the treatment of disease, to the examina- 
tion of remedies, aided with money, power, and protection 
from the law, with all the resources possible in this world to 
such kind of research, and they had failed, while I, a plain 
man, from a so-called backwoods country, without any such 
advantages, with very little money, and without any protec- 
tion, had been able to start a discovery of my own which 
would revolutionize medical science, upturn all old theories, 
stop the processes of deception practised by doctors, 'en- 
lighten the people on matters most important to themselves, 
and all by a simple and efficacious cure. This was done by 
simply putting natural proofs before the public, so that they 
could not fail to believe what they saw, in place of going out 
of my way to describe some evil spirit that I had not seen. 
I had raised a foundation that no power in the world can 
break down, and the reader who will follow me to the end 
will see that I have been able to ward off all kinds of attacks, 
some of them of the most infamous and malicious character, 
absolutely untruthful, and based upon ignorance where they 
were not inspired by the worst motives. I have defeated 
such attacks invariably, and with the help of the public 
whom I shall have enlightened I can go on and beat down 
all opposition whether it comes from a want of knowledge 
or from evil minds and jealousy. My army of friends, pa- 
tients, and supporters is growing day by day, and there are 
hundreds, nay thousands, of physicians assisting me in the 
exposure of medical science as it is taught in the schools and 
practised in the hospitals and medical colleges. 

It was at Austin, Texas, my own home, that the people 


first enabled me to introduce this medicine throughout the 
broad land of America, and they did so because they saw I 
cured the people who came to me. Many of them had influ- 
ential friends elsewhere in the United States, and they sent 
to them accounts of the fame of my discovery. Frequently 
they forwarded medicine at the same time to persons whom 
they knew to be in need of treatment, and often my circulars 
went with it. The only publication I had at that time was a 
small four-page print, and it brought me hundreds of peo- 
ple who benefited by the treatment and then themselves 
advertised the wonderful powers of my discovery. But my 
business grew so rapidly and so earnest a desire was evinced 
to know more about my medicine that I soon found it 
necessary to enlarge my publications, and what was at first 
but four small pages grew in two years to a large octavo 
pamphlet of fifty pages. This contains in not the least valu- 
able portion a number of testimonials from persons who 
have been benefited or cured by my treatment, and they are 

Still the public curiosity was not satisfied. Intense inter- 
est was very naturally felt in the discovery, which was recog- 
nized as something not only wonderful in its effects but 
evidently calculated to bring about a sweeping reform in 
the management of disease and in the methods of medical 
men. Further than that, I had in self-defence to protect 
myself against the machinations of unprincipled people, and 
for that there seemed to be nothing better than to take the 
public into my confidence as fully as possible. Hence the 
reason for my preparing this book, which is an emanation 
simply of my own brain, with a statement of my own 
thoughts and experiences. It is original. I am not in- 
debted to any other books for ideas or opinions, nor to 
any hearsay evidence upon the topics touched upon. It 
is my own property, the result of my own hard work, and 
I hope that it will be respected as such, and that no one will 
steal or pilfer its contents. 

There is no permission from me to anybody to use my 



writings. Whoever takes them steals, and when the thief is 
caught justice and the law shall be meted out to him. 

Almost from the first the cures I made with my medicine 
were reported far and wide. The reputation of my discovery 
spread rapidly. People found that they could do without 
doctors. Many who had been under physicians' care took 
it and found themselves benefited as they never had been 
before. Others had recourse to it as soon as they felt them- 
selves sick, and they were relieved so readily and satisfac- 
torily that they had no occasion to apply to a doctor at all. 
It was therefore quite natural and not at all to be wondered 
at that physicians should begin to take an interest in it. 
They found their fees becoming fewer, and they wanted to 
learn something about a discovery which was thus so mate- 
rially affecting their interests. But before learning anything 
they condemned it. Their plan was to hang their man first 
and try him after. All that they knew about the microbe 
killer when they first abused it was that it was interfering 
with their business. It has continued to interfere with their 
business, and it will interfere yet more, so that they cannot 
but be a little anxious about it. They began by telling the 
most wonderful stories about it. They described to their 
female patients what a terrible thing it was, and that if they 
took it, it would in a short time burn up the coating of the 
stomach, producing incurable disease, and ultimately death. 
But while painting this alarming picture they saw that, like 
all such things, it would have its day, and then die out. 
They gave it twelve months in which to disappear and be 
heard of no more. 

I heard all this, and it amused me, the more- so because I 
found that some of the doctors who so energetically con- 
demned it were using it themselves. Life is sweet, and 
while there is life there is hope. AZgroto dum anima spes 
est. So the sick doctors, when their own medicine failed 
them, had enough hope left to try mine, and they got well. 
But they would not give me credit for it. They were afraid, 
because every sick man cured by me was so much loss to 


them. So they went on abusing me, and at the same time 
seeking my help. How could I avoid laughing at such a 
scene ? 

The demand continued to increase. It grew beyond my 
ability to meet it, and I was forced into making arrange- 
ments for meeting the requirements of what had now become 
a most successful business. Accordingly I tore down my 
little seed-store and erected a two-story building, 46 feet front 
by 160 feet deep, of an elegant design, as the illustration 
shows. This structure is still standing at Austin, and has 
become the headquarters of the business, from which seven- 
teen other factories controlled by as many companies have 
sprung into existence within twenty-four months, while the 
discoverer of the microbe killer has changed his residence 
into a beautiful mansion on Fifth Avenue, in New York, 
facing Central Park. There it is that these lines are written, 
and thence the whole business throughout the world is con- 
trolled. This indicates the success that has fallen to me, 
and the appreciation which the public have bestowed upon 
my remedy, for people are not slow to determine the merits 
of something that is what it is represented to be, and there 
are none of us of sane mind who do not set good health 
as higher in value than gold. 



I WILL now go back to the first few months while my 
discovery was before the public. This will necessitate the 
narration of several interesting incidents which have taken 
place in the interval. 

It will readily be understood that my correspondence has 
been large. For some time I was in direct personal com- 
munication with my patients. They would write me full 
particulars with all details of their complaints as far as 
they could give them, and all such letters I replied to per- 
sonally, giving advice as to the best way to use the remedy 
and all necessary instructions. But people soon acquired 
confidence. They soon learned what to do. The reputa- 
tion of the medicine spread, and people ordered it without 
writing any particulars or asking any information. In this 
way thousands of people have availed themselves of it, but 
of whose maladies I know nothing. The information that 
came to me was surprising, but it is not necessary to detail 
it here. Where full statements were given I learned the 
varieties of the disease that doctors described, the effects of 
climate, the quantity of medicine that had been swallowed, 
the large sums of money spent in fees and drugs, and then 
at the end of all, how the doctors had entirely failed to do 
any good. Very often the symptoms were worse than they 
had been at the beginning, and sometimes I heard how 
friends of my correspondents had died under the physician's 



I had letters containing pitiful stories of distress and 
misery quite unalleviated by the medicines prescribed, and 
many wrote me, who said that they were bedridden ; 
others, that they were nearly helpless and unable to move, 
and others again, whose powers to work and earn their 
living had been terribly interfered with. I was at times 
amazed at the revelations put before me, and found in 
all an endorsement of the results of my own experiments 
and a further proof that the doctors ignore Nature's teach- 
ings and work in ignorance and darkness. When a patient 
came to me, or wrote me for advice, I always explained 
to him his situation, describing the action of microbes, and 
how, when thoroughly in control of the human system, they 
produce a general condition of fermentation and rotten- 
ness. I let them always understand that a total renovation 
was necessary, that the purification of the blood must be 
complete, that no microbes or causes for fermentation must 
be left behind. This was an absolute necessity ; and then it 
would have to be seen how much healthy portion remained. 
The whole treatment was different from any thing they had 
been accustomed to, and my advice may sometimes have 
opened their eyes and given them new ideas, but I can con- 
scientiously and truthfully say that in every instance where 
my counsel was listened to and my instructions were followed, 
a cure was effected, no matter what name the doctors may 
have given to the complaint. Where advice was not fol- 
lowed, when the patient went by his own judgment and 
rejected the rules laid down for him, the treatment was not 
entirely successful, and I never expected that it would be. 
Physicians themselves constantly have cases of that kind, 
cases where strict instructions are given and the patient 
either will not or cannot carry them out. The result is 
rarely satisfactory, and the patient must then be held respon- 
sible for any failure. So in the use of my discovery, if ad- 
vice is followed and the medicine be taken properly, a cure 
must be expected ; if otherwise, the patient has only himself 
to blame. 




I treated all my patients with the same medicine, just as 
in my garden I would treat all weeds alike. There are end- 
less varieties of weeds, a very large number of which are 
familiar to me by name, but that would not cause me to 
pause about their extermination, or the method of effecting 
it. What matters it what the scientific name of a weed 
may be ? so long as it is a weed, that suffices. It is swept 
away. We do not adopt one method of removal for one 
kind, and another for another. It may be interesting to 
the botanist to classify his plants, to name them and describe 
them and to tell us what their properties should be ; but 
that kind of knowledge is of only secondary moment to the 
practical gardener who wants to see the most vigorous 
health and growth among things that are his special care. 

Suppose a gardener were to see one of his flower-beds 
overrun with weeds of various descriptions, and were to tell 
his assistant first to classify those weeds, then to pull up 
one kind, afterward to cut off another, and so on ; by the 
time the work was accomplished the flowers would be 
smothered to death, and new weeds would be coming up 
where the first had been removed. 

So it is with disease in the human body. We are not to 
waste time and endanger the patient's health by trifling 
about special symptoms. We know the person is sick. 
We know the cause of his sickness : let us then remove that 
cause, and the person will be well. If we choose to talk 
among ourselves about his symptoms, that will not harm 
anybody, but we have no right to endanger a patient's 
life or to delay his cure. Did you ever go into a hospital 
when a leading physician is going around the wards ? A 
new patient may have come in, whose case particularly 
interests him. He will stop at the bedside of that patient, 
and although the poor fellow may be too sick to rise or 
turn, he will spend half an hour pounding and thumping 
him, listening to his heart and his lungs, and going through 
a tedious ceremony, simply to try and diagnose some 
minute points which have nothing whatever to do with the 


cure or with the mode of treatment that the disease calls 
for. It looks scientific. It tends to surround the doctor's 
calling with a halo of mystery. It deceives the patient and 
the public. It keeps them in ignorance. It hides from 
them the true simplicity of medicine and disease, and leads 
them to suppose that there can be no chance for them in 
this world or the next if they attempt to cure themselves 
without a physician's aid. Diagnosing disease is simply 
blindfolding the public, but physicians dare not acknowl- 
edge it, for if they did, their glorious work would be undone, 
their services would not be needed, and they would have 
to fall back upon other occupations. 

I have ever been a close observer of human nature and 
of the world and I have seen a great deal of it, but 
never till my discovery came before the public, was I aware 
of the numberless tricks and devices that are used to deceive 
and take advantage of the sick. There seems to' be some- 
thing very heartless in a system which enables any set of 
men to avail themselves of the time when a person is suffer- 
ing and perhaps in despair, to prey upon his credulities in 
order to draw money from his purse. Some doctors do this 
literally and without compunction. They look upon a 
patient's misfortune as their opportunity, and they amass 
money by just such opportunities. Many physicians are 
more regardful of their own honor and the people's rights, 
and when they waste time in diagnosis, it is done in igno- 
rance. They believe they are enlightening themselves and 
serving their patient, not knowing that all the trouble they 
take is unnecessary. 

While expressing this opinion, I cannot be blind to the 
spirit of charity which abounds in the medical profession, 
whose members certainly do more for their fellow-men with- 
out thought or hope of reward, than any people who depend 
upon their own efforts for their livelihood. People owe 
more to the physician than they acknowledge or perhaps 
realize, nevertheless medical science is imperfect, medical 
ethics are obstructive, and medical men, even when acting 


up to the fullest requirements of their profession, are too 
often in a rut that leads them to error and militates against 
the best interests of the sick. 

There is much evidence at hand of the value of my dis- 
covery. It may not be necessary. I have probably ad- 
duced enough already to satisfy my readers, but I wish to 
make this work as complete and as thorough as possible. I 
must therefore cover the whole ground, in justice both to 
myself and to the public. I have already mentioned that 
some of the doctors foretold how my discovery would go the 
way of quack medicines, by which they meant that in a few 
months it would be forgotten. The present state of my 
business, the facts that there are seventeen factories engaged 
in making the microbe killer, that it is already established 
throughout the United States and is being sought after in 
Europe, in other parts of the great American continent, and 
in Australia, all go to show what false prophets those 
doctors were. In place of going the way of worthless 
quack medicines, the microbe killer has become an essential 
in thousands of homes, and it has cured thousands of people 
also whom the doctors had failed to relieve. It has risen 
so rapidly into public favor that it has been difficult to 
keep pace with the demand that has been made for it, and 
our trouble has been not to get it recognized and sold, but 
to manufacture it fast enough to supply the public needs. 
Its success has demonstrated its merits and it has shown 
also that it supplied a want, that people's confidence in 
medical science was failing, that they were ready to grasp at 
something that promised to enlighten them and cure them, 
and at the same time to release them from the bondage in 
which they were held by their doctors. 

Other physicians treated the matter less lightly. Instead 
of ostensibly regarding it as of no importance and soon to 
perish for want of support they cautioned their patients 
against it. Some said boldly that it was dangerous, that it 
would destroy the tissues and intensify disease instead of 
mitigating it. In reply to such imaginings people came 


forward who had been cured, and others mentioned the 
names of friends who had likewise been cured. Of course 
there was no getting over facts like that, so then the doctors 
took other ground. They acknowledged that possibly it 
might have some beneficial effects in diseases produced by 
microbes, but that it would be absolutely worthless and 
even dangerous in such diseases as are not caused by 
microbes. When I heard this I offered to give my check 
for one hundred dollars to any one who would name a 
disease that is not caused by microbes, and who could prove 
his position. The offer has not yet been accepted, and it 
still remains open. Here is a chance for some of the young 
students at our medical schools and colleges, to any one of 
whom I shall be most happy to render that amount of 
pecuniary assistance if he will earn it by complying with the 
conditions. His discovery would immortalize him. He 
might carry his piece of parchment out into the world with 
the fame of having been a successful explorer in a region 
where others had groped in darkness. He would have 
made a discovery that never has been made, despite all the 
knowledge of human ills and all the science of which the 
medical profession claims to have a monopoly. 

Those persons who have followed me through the preced- 
ing pages will see readily why the reward has never been 
called for. Disease is fermentation, and fermentation with- 
out microbes is impossible. Therefore disease must be 
accompanied by microbes. You cannot have an effect 
without a cause, and where a particular effect can be pro- 
duced only by one cause, it is at once apparent what that 
cause must be. Nothing is easier than to talk and to say 
what is and what is not, but talking is of no value in an 
assertion without proof, and directly we come down to 
proof my position is impregnable. The doctors who say 
that disease can exist without microbes are either ignorant 
or guilty of wilful deception, and they show their weakness 
by refusing my offer. If they are ignorant they are not fit 
to have the responsibility for human life. If they are 


capable of wilfully deceiving their patients in direct viola- 
tion of the dictates of their own better knowledge they are 
unworthy of any position among honest men, still less of a 
place in the ranks of a profession that has so much preten- 
sion as that of medicine. They are unworthy of public 
respect or public confidence. They are merely human 
vultures preying upon the ignorance and credulity and 
weaknesses and sufferings of their fellow-men. 

But all the efforts of the doctors fell harmless, not from 
lack of energy, or from any want of repetition. They were 
poured out with zeal worthy of a better cause and with re- 
lentless violence. They came as the efforts of men in a life- 
and-death struggle, and so in truth they were, for the science 
of medicine in the form now held up before the people can- 
not stand against the developments which my discovery will 
certainly make. But it had no effect. The cures effected 
by the microbe killer were more convincing evidence than 
all the prophecies and forebodings of interested persons. A 
man cured of a disease when the doctors had failed was an 
advertisement which could not be ignored, and there were 
thousands of such advertisements all over the country. 
Cures were effected in such unlikely cases that they could 
not fail to receive attention, and the wonderful work of my 
discovery was more than an answer to the dreary talk of the 
doctors. The evidence startled the profession, and its mem- 
bers saw that if things went on as they were going, ruin 
would stare them in the face. They discussed the situation. 
They realized that the law would not help them, for I had 
infringed nobody else's rights while exercising those which 
belong to every citizen of this free country. I had done 
no harm to any of my patients. I had killed nobody. I 
had only endangered the prospects of men who were less 
useful, and multitudes bore testimony that in doing so I 
had rendered good service to suffering humanity. The only 
practical course that seemed to be left open to my enemies 
was to devise an imitation of the microbe killer. That they 
thought would at least counteract the work of my discovery 


and spoil its reputation, and if any injury should be done 
by their imitation, they could readily put the blame upon me. 

It was a fiendish scheme, but the world is full of adven- 
turers and unscrupulous people, who are ready to steal the 
product of other people's brains and to prey upon their 
fellow-men. They cared nothing for the law. They rather 
sought litigation, knowing that justice costs money, and that 
if I had not enough wherewith to purchase that to which I 
was entitled, they knew that they could drive me to the 
wall. But fortunately I was not without means, although 
if I had been, if I had not been able to let the people learn 
the truth, or to fight my cause in the courts, I do not see 
how I could possibly have" made as much progress as I have. 

This, however, is always the case. Numberless inventions 
that would be of the utmost value to humanity are con- 
stantly being held back, because the owners are not strong 
enough to put them before the people, and to protect them- 
selves against the harpies who would destroy them. And 
very frequently inventions that have wrought much public 
good, and have been active agents in furthering human 
progress, have brought no profit whatever to their inventor, 
although they may have given wealth and influence to peo- 
ple who came after and took advantage of his work. The 
world is full of such examples, and my enemies doubtless 
thought that if they were unscrupulous enough, they could 
force me to enter the same list. But they were wonderfully 
deceived. I had the power to protect myself, and I used it. 

For four months I was undisturbed. But henceforward 
litigation began, and I had a year of lawsuits. This was 
something entirely new to me. I had never been a litigant. 
I had always tried to mind my own business, and to do 
harm to no man. So when I had, as I did sometimes, to 
pass a week in and about the courts, I felt an entirely novel 
sensation. I appeared in different characters, sometimes as 
plaintiff, at others as defendant. There is no occasion here 
to mention names and to go into too much detail, the more 
especially as I have issued a separate pamphlet on the sub- 




ject, which may be had free of charge on application to any 
of the companies who are manufacturing my microbe killer. 
In that circular I have told how some eight or ten different 
imitations of my medicine were introduced, and I have ex- 
plained the tricks which my opponents descended to, and 
described the fury of the medical profession at the failure of 
their efforts to ruin me. 

But it is necessary that I should not pass this part of my 
subject by altogether in silence. I will therefore convey to 
the reader some idea of the miserable meannesses to which 
some persons had recourse, people whom I had never in- 
jured, but who were actuated by malevolence, simply be- 
cause my discovery, to which I was fully entitled, chanced 
to interfere with their medical aspirations, or the sale of 

The first notification that I had of the attack about to be 
made upon me was in the shape of an advertisement painted 
on my own fence. It bore the name of a doctor and 
druggist who sold and extensively advertised some nostrum 
for curing constipation, and he now added to the usual form 
the words : " It kills microbes." On another part of the 
fence he told how his medicine would " cure consumption." 
I was amused, and smiled at the thing. My neighbors 
called upon me and smiled too. " You see he is getting 
mad," said one. " He wants to make the public believe 
that he, too, kills microbes," says another. So everybody 
understood the trick, and presently the word " consump- 
tion " was obliterated, and the word " constipation " was 
substituted, which made the thing more ridiculous than 
before, and passers by seldom failed to laugh at the absurd 
effort to injure me. What was the consequence ? Merely 
that the sales of my medicine went on faster than before, 
and the walls of my factory rose higher. Instead of injuring 
my business the scheme seemed to help it. The fact was it 
advertised me. People understood it, and they were more 
disposed to condemn such trickery than to permit them- 
selves to be led away by it. I do not think that true man- 


hood will ever come down to the level of maliciously injuring 
another ; neither will it countenance any thing that is mani- 
festly unfair and unjust. I had hosts of friends among my 
neighbors who stood by me, and who treated with more 
than contempt the paltry efforts that were being used 
against me by unprincipled and jealous opponents. 

In view, therefore, of the failure to destroy my business, 
and of the manifest truth that their schemes were only 
stimulating a demand for my medicine, these people planned 
a new device, which they thought at least would check my 
prosperity, if it did not drive me out of the field. They 
formed a company, and among the incorporators was an 
old man whom I had cured of asthma. He had been 
afflicted for twenty years, and had tried every thing that 
physicians could recommend, but without deriving any 
benefit. At last he came to me, and, after a due course of 
treatment, his cough had left him, his breathing became 
natural, he had no spasms, and, in fact, he acknowledged 
himself cured ; all of which facts I afterwards brought out 
in open court. 

I felt sorry for the old man, sorry that he had lent him- 
self to be made a tool of by designing people to injure me 
who had relieved him of a terrible disease, and had so far 
contributed to the happiness of his remaining years of life. 
I had lengthened his days also, for he could not have lived 
long in the condition he was in when he came to me ; and 
this was the way he showed his gratitude. He turned 
around and forced me into the courts, to annoy me and 
exhaust my means, and all because the other side, who were 
themselves gratuitously seeking to close up my business, 
had paid him to try and ruin his benefactor. Surely if there 
be a hell it must be the right place for such as he. 

I cannot avoid narrating some of my experiences, and it 
is better I should not, for they illustrate the circumstances 
under which I put my discovery before the public, and they 
demonstrate the obstacles which any one may expect to 
have to overcome who has any thing valuable which nobody 


else possesses. One day I received a package containing 
some newspapers and advertisements ; also a jug and a 
circular, and at the same time I received a letter from one 
of my agents asking for an explanation. Then the whole 
scheme became apparent to me. Every thing was prepared 
in such a way as to lead the public to suppose that it was 
my medicine. The jug in which my medicine is sold was 
exactly imitated. The name was the same. The directions 
were identical. The wrappers, circulars, advertisements, 
all corresponded with mine. The only difference was in the 
price. Trouble soon began. One person wrote me that he 
had procured the microbe killer of my agent for $2.50, 
whereas before I had charged him $3. Another wrote me 
that he had sent a post-office order for $6 a week before 
and that he had heard nothing about it. On inquiry I 
found that he addressed it carelessly, although he had had 
the order made payable to me, and consequently nobody 
else could collect the money. 

Another patient complained that the last medicine sent 
to him was different from what he had before, and so it 
went on again. Every thing I used and printed was so 
closely imitated that people did not know that they were 
not receiving my medicine. The only difference was in the 
medicine itself, and there they could not imitate my mi- 
crobe killer, so the person who was deceived by them may 
possibly have taken something that was even injurious, and, 
not knowing the deception imposed upon him, he would be 
likely to blame me if the medicine proved to be of no effect. 
That company employed the most worthless characters that 
they could get together. It did not matter. Their purpose 
was less to start a business for themselves than to destroy 
mine. They sent out dodgers with my own reading matter 
in them. They praised the virtues of their medicine much 
louder than I ever had occasion to do with mine ; and in all 
their advertising they paid particular attention to those 
localities where the microbe killer was best known and had 
been most successful. One of their dodgers read thus: 


" A Life Elixir at last. A physician, after life-long study, 
has discovered the greatest remedy on earth. It cures all 
microbe diseases, such as Yellow-Fever, Cholera, Consump- 
tion, Cancer, Catarrh, and a host of others." 

The country is overrun with people who are awaiting an 
opportunity to benefit themselves at somebody else's ex- 
pense, and again there are plenty of others always actuated 
enough by envy to wish to stand in the way of a neighbor's 
success ; but it is not often that one hears of any thing so 
unscrupulous as the conduct of that company in their 
resolve to injure me that they might profit by my mis- 
fortune. There were only two things to do. I must either 
consent to let those people ride rough-shod over me and ruin 
the prospects I had from my discovery, or I must defend 
my just rights in the courts. There was nothing else 
nothing at least that offered any practical and definite 
protection to me. My trade-mark was registered, and cer- 
tain processes necessary to the manufacture of the microbe 
killer were patented. So far I had taken the necessary 
precautions to place myself in security, but that was not 
enough. A lawsuit was inevitable, and I soon discovered 
the joy and delight which lawyers feel when they are 
engaged in plucking a fat goose. Justice is a costly thing. 
It is every man's right, but it has to be purchased neverthe- 
less. Theory and practice are very different. All men are 
equal before the law, says the one. But the other has a 
very different story, and insists that the almighty dollar 
shall intervene to stop the poor man even of his rights. 
There is no justice except what is paid for ; and so I found, 
for impregnable as my situation was, my friends the lawyers 
took care to profit well by my resolution to defend it. 

Some months before my case came up for trial, one of 
those old whiskey-soaked lawyers whom one meets with in 
places everywhere, came to me in distress. He was sick, and 
asked my advice. He followed instructions, bought some 
bottles of microbe killer, and got cured. He was delighted. 
" The people will build you a monument, Mr. Radam," he 


said to me one day, and he never lost an opportunity to 
praise my medicine. He had good cause, for he had received 
more relief from it than he had from all the stuff that the 
doctors had given him, and he was glad to use it. But 
when my case got into court, I found him engaged on the 
other side. He cross-examined me, too, and some of his 
questions were : Are you a physician ? Are you a druggist ? 
Then, if not, how is it possible for you to prepare medi- 
cine ? I told him that I was neither doctor nor druggist, 
and that he knew of his own experience that if I had been I 
could not have cured him or anybody else in the same con- 
dition, for those fellows always work for the almighty dollar, 
and not to cure their patients, if they can make more by 
keeping them sick, while they represent me as one of the 
most dangerous and one of the worst men that were ever 
born. I have often thought that if men like that lawyer 
and others I have met with should ever get to heaven, I 
should have no wish to be in their company. 

The judge wrote the following finding: 

ist. I find that the plaintiff manufactures and sells a medicine 
of good curative properties and large commercial value. 

2d. That this medicine rapidly made a reputation, which gave 
it large commercial value. 


Judge Twenty-Sixth Judicial District of Texas. 

Appended to the above I have the subjoined certificate: 


I, John Dowell, Travis County, Texas, do hereby certify that 
the above and foregoing are true and correct extracts taken from 
the findings of the Judge as to facts in case of Wm. Radam vs. 
Capital Microbe Destroyer Co., et at., in District Court of Travis 
Co., Texas, the original of which is on file in said Court. 

Given under my hand and seal of office this zpth day of July, 

A.D., 1888. 


Notary Public, Travis Co., Texas. 

1 1 8 MICROBES. 

Well, the trial turned out to my benefit in the end. A 
little trouble is sometimes useful. It serves to show us who 
our friends are. It brings out the best and the worst points 
in a man's character, and often teaches us that there are 
better people in the world, and worse ones, too, than we are 
apt to suppose. 

The story of my discovery was now known to everybody. 
The lawsuit was a grand advertisement. All honorable 
people gathered around me. I found I had a host of friends, 
and that there were some among my neighbors who were 
qualified only to be cared for by Mephistopheles. Of the eight 
or ten imitations of my medicines that appeared within two 
years the majority belonged to sons of ^sculapius, who 
found it more profitable to drop their usual calling and to 
try to earn a living by imitating the work of another man's 
brains. They went where my microbe killer was best 
known, and probably they picked up a few dollars by their 
misrepresentations, for there are always a number of people 
about who are ready to buy any thing on the faith of mis- 
representations that are made to them and without investi- 
gation. Sometimes these men went so far as to buy up my 
jugs from my own patients, refill them with their mixture, 
and sell as genuine. I doubt if there was ever any thing so 
much imitated in so short a time as was Radam's Microbe 
Killer, and for the simple reason that no similar discovery 
has made so great a reputation in the same time. 

At my headquarters I have a collection of all samples of 
jugs, bottles, and circulars of my imitators, and if imitations 
increase as fast in the future as they did in the past, I shall 
have such a museum as cannot be equalled. It will be 
quite unique, and I can look upon it with satisfaction, be- 
cause it is evidence that I have done something which is 
worthy of imitation. I also keep on file all the medical 
papers which have tried to cry down Radam's Microbe Killer, 
and to appeal to the public for protection against "quack 
medicines." Gentlemen, send on your papers as fast as you 
please, for there is plenty of room in my museum. It never 


hurts me to be well-advertised, and every attack upon me 

is an advertisement. There is a spirit of fair play abroad 
among most people, and when they see a man attacked 
they are apt to pause and evince some interest. If they 
convince themselves that the attack is unjust, their sympa- 
thy is excited, and the wrong falls at once upon the proper 
party. It is only when the attack is justifiable that it can 
harm the object of it. In my case my neighbors knew me 
too well for any thing of the kind to hurt me ; and where I 
was not personally known, my medicine spoke for me, and 
the microbe killer gave the lie to slander. 

The factory at Austin had been in operation only nine 
months, when calls for a larger supply of my medicine came 
in, and new factories became necessary. Several new com- 
panies were formed, and to-day a little over two years have 
elapsed, and we have seventeen factories in full operation to 
supply the demand of the United States, Canada, and Great 
Britain. Is not this a proof in itself of the value of my dis- 
covery ? If it were not capable of effecting what is prom- 
ised for it, how could it have made such a success and been 
so largely developed in so short a time ? 

The people are not in the habit of supporting any thing 
which they know to be worthless. They may be deceived 
for a time, but any thing which advertises itself by its own 
merits and extends as rapidly in popular demand as the 
microbe killer has, must be worthy of approval and equal to 
all that is represented about it. It must be remembered 
further, that each factory as it started met with similar 
opposition. Each had to go through the same ordeal. 
The doctors, and everybody connected with so-called medi- 
cal science set themselves in opposition to us. It might be 
supposed that the druggists would not oppose any thing that 
they can sell, but they do not want any thing that cures all 
diseases. They want as much profit as they can get, and 
they would rather sell half a dozen nostrums, even if they 
knew them to be worthless. It stands to reason that they 
do not care to see a person cured. They would rather keep 


him on the string, and so make more money out of him. It 
is a mistake to suppose that the druggist any more than 
the doctor desires to get a customer off his hands. Then, 
again, every person who came to me at first, or certainly 
the great majority of them, had been swindled before by 
quack doctors, or had paid away a good deal of money in 
medical fees, and they were cautious. They investigated 
before they bought the microbe killer, and as soon as they 
found that it was as represented, they were equally zealous 
in proclaiming its merits. 

My success has not been due to my own advertising. 
The microbe killer was bound to go because of its intrinsic 
value. It could not fail as soon as people began to find out 
what it is. All who are now in the business have used it 
themselves, either personally or for members of their family 
or both, and they have seen its advantages among their 
friends. From this experience they know that it must 
succeed. What they tell the people who apply to them is 
from their own knowledge, not merely from instructions, 
and they know that it must certainly supersede other medi- 
cines. Our agents who are evergwhere, are people of standing 
and character, they include ladies of all ages and gentle- 
men of all professions, and they are selling the microbe 
killer and curing people who have been given up by the 
doctors, and whom physicians have told that nobody can 
cure. I could cite thousands of cases that have been pro- 
nounced as beyond the reach of help by physicians who 
have been cured by our agents with the microbe killer. 

Many experiences have occurred to me within the last 
two years, some of which I may mention. In 1887, yellow- 
fever prevailed at Key West, Florida, when it produced 
great havoc among the scanty population. I was anxious 
to treat it, feeling confident that I could control it. Ac- 
cordingly I wrote to the Inspector of Customs there and 
expressed to him two gallons of my medicine, requesting to 
administer it according to directions without fear, as I was 
confident it would destroy the fever germs. I sent him 


particulars of my discovery with testimony as to its efficacy 
and he told me he had never heard of it before. This was 
probable, for at that time it was quite new and I had taken 
no special means to make it known. But all to no purpose. 
He would not use it because, as he said, he did not know 
how it was made. This was acting up to the ethics of the 
medical profession, whose members profess to prescribe 
nothing which they do not understand the nature of and the 
composition or mode of manufacture. But when we look at 
the way in which that rule operated in this instance, we 
cannot fail to recognize how it operates to the detriment of 
the public. Here were people dying of an extremely dan- 
gerous disease. More than a fifth of those who were 
attacked perished. Medical science failed. I came in with 
the microbe killer confident that I could cure, and the 
doctors would not give me the chance to try. They knew 
that my medicine could do no harm, and they would not 
find out for themselves whether it would do good. They 
would rather see their patients carried away to the cemetery 
than break through a rule which says they must only use 
certain drugs and certain formulae. 

The deaths at that time were twenty-one per cent., and the 
doctors called that a favorable result and congratulated 
themselves on the success of their treatment, which the 
physician in charge explained to me. He said that he gave 
his patients as much turpentine as they could bear without 
being poisoned. Turpentine is abundant in Florida. 
Then to reduce the fever he applied ice to the patient's 
head, and his theory was that as the turpentine permeates 
the tissues it counteracts the poison. 

Now, if that man still lives he should, in my opinion, be 
indicted for manslaughter for the methods that he acknowl- 
edges having used. The yellow-fever would not have 
prevailed in Florida as it did if the same kind of stupidity 
had not stood in the way of preventing it, for Dr. Wolfred 
Nelson, a Canadian physician, who has large experience at 
Panama, saw evidences of it at Jacksonville months before 


and warned the people, but again medical ethics stood in the 
way, and as a result a large part of the population perished. 
Yellow-fever is at first infectious, but it becomes contagious 
as it advances in severity, and every hour is of consequence. 
There is no time to experiment with remedies that have 
been known to fail, and these are legion. A physician who 
has seen thousands of cases of it once said : " Four centu- 
ries have taught the profession nothing, or next to it. All 
that has been known of yellow-fever is that people got it 
and died. May God forgive the old school of medicine for 
its ignorance and charlatanism." That, I say, is the remark 
of a physician eminent in his profession and who knows 
whereof he speaks when he thus alludes to yellow-fever. 
But there is more in this. Yellow-fever is acknowledged by 
the doctors to be a microbe disease. The micro-organisms are 
in the blood, and they have the peculiarity of seizing upon 
the blood corpuscles and destroying them. The only 
form of treatment that can be of any use is one in which 
some agency is introduced into the blood that renders it 
unavailable as a culture fluid for the microbes, so that they 
cannot grow and be reproduced. Turpentine does not do 
this, and it only kills the microbes by first killing the 
patient. But that is the principle upon which my medicine 
operates. It goes through the system. It enters the blood, 
and while enriching that important fluid it gets it into a 
condition where microbes cannot exist. They perish as 
soon as they come in contact with it. 

From what I have said in other places about the anti- 
septic properties of alcohol and whiskey, it maybe supposed 
that these would act against the germs of yellow-fever, but 
they do not. As a matter of fact, all persons are liable to it 
in those parts of the tropics where it prevails. Moderate 
drinkers sometimes surfer more than total abstainers, and 
hard drinkers almost invariably succumb. Physicians know 
this, they know that this fever is a blood disease, yet they 
will not go aside from their old routine. They have hunted 
about for post-mortem appearances to find some pathologi- 


cal conditions, but they find none. There are none to find. 
The disease is in the blood and nowhere else, and if they will 
examine the blood with a microscope they will see the 
microbes and the ruined blood corpuscles. The brain is 
affected in this fever, and why ? Simply because the oxygen 
supplied in health by the blood can no longer be carried 
there ; and the broken up corpuscles are eliminated and 
shown in the form of albumen in the kidneys. It is well 
known that yellow-fever may be communicated by mosqui- 
toes. One only of these insects biting a healthy person 
after having drawn blood from a fever-stricken patient, can 
convey the disease ; and it does so by carrying the microbe 
from one to the other. 

I dwell upon this subject of yellow-fever because it is a 
most marked illustration of the value of my medicine, and 
to show that, although the doctors, or some of them at least, 
know these things, they would rather see a patient die under 
their old-fashioned treatment than live under mine. But 
the people are becoming enlightened. Their eyes must be 
opened to these things. They must be made to see for 
themselves how they have been preyed upon, and how the 
medical profession impedes the introduction of medicines 
that will cure, rather than move from their own beaten track. 
They must be allowed to recognize the perversity of the 
men at Key West, who, with persons dying in scores around 
them, refused to allow my medicine to be used, although its 
merits were put before them, and preferred to drench their 
victims with turpentine. If such men had their deserts, 
they would themselves be filled with turpentine, and then, 
following their own methods, be stowed away in an ice-house 
to cool off. 

Yet such treatment is still being followed, as in accord 
with medical science. The reader will have noted in this 
connection what was said in previous pages about the use of 
paint as a preservative ; and how turpentine assists to de- 
stroy fungi and micro-organisms on houses, fences, and on 
wood generally. Lumber of fat pine lasts longer in the 


ground than sapwood, on account of the resin and turpen- 
tine, on the same principle. Thus, what Nature and the 
painter use to preserve dead matter, the physician uses to 
preserve living matter. Ice does not kill microbes, it only 
checks fermentation. Experiments have shown that they 
can sustain a degree of cold many degrees below zero of 
Fahrenheit, and still be as lively, as prolific, and as danger- 
ous as before. Unfortunately, patients or their friends have 
found these things out for themselves. The physicians at 
Key West acknowledge a mortality among their patients of 
more than twenty per cent. I wonder whether the mortality 
would have been much greater if there had been no doctors 
in the neighborhood ; but I have no doubt it would have 
been very much less if some intelligent system of treatment 
in accordance with the laws and teaching of Nature had 
been adopted. Friends of the victims have at any rate dis- 
covered that the medical system was a failure, and perhaps 
if ever a similar visitation should fall upon them, they will 
be ready to cut adrift from medical science and get the 
benefit of a consistent medicine. 

It has always been a source of deep regret to me that 
through the barriers, erected by the medical profession in 
the same way in Germany, I was unable to reach the late 
Emperor Frederick. I wrote seven letters to Berlin, and 
received not a single answer not even an acknowledgment. 
Jealousy reigned among the physicians in attendance. 
Each one wanted the honor of curing, or at least of ad- 
vising, and even if they had known of a remedy which was 
outside of science, it is doubtful whether they would have 
used it. I gave them ample testimony as to the value of 
my medicine, and I asked them at least to investigate for 
themselves and ascertain the truth of my statements, but 
they would not. Ignorance and jealousy stood in the way. 
Just as the physicians at Key West would rather see their 
patients die of yellow-fever than have them cured by some 
one outside the pale of theii own profession, so those doc- 
tors at Berlin were prepared rather to sacrifice the life of the 


Emperor of Germany than test the value of a treatment to 
which the only objection was, that it is the discovery of one 
who is not a physician. Even my letters were suppressed. 
The patient never knew of their existence. He was kept in 
entire ignorance of the relief that I offered him, and was 
allowed to die a victim to professional prejudices and personal 

How many hundreds of thousands of people are in like 
manner kept in ignorance to-day through the perversity that 
killed the Emperor ! The profession ignored my medicine. 
They did not notice it. I watched the medical papers care- 
fully from day to day and from week to week, and no notice 
was taken of it. I read all bulletins as they came out, and 
it was unheeded. The course pursued by the physicians at- 
tending on the Emperor was one that favored the production 
of microbes. They were nursed, and their culture was in- 
creased. At first they were in one locality only, but they 
multiplied to such an extent that soon they occupied the 
whole body. They filled the tissues. They circulated in 
the blood, producing a general condition of fermentation, so 
that the body underwent a process of decay and decomposi- 
tion during life. The whole system must have been filled 
with living matter. Every organ, every muscle must have 
been teeming with micro-organisms. Yet that patient was 
in care of the most eminent physicians even in Europe, and 
they, with all the resources which medical science had put 
into their hands, could not cure him. What then might we 
expect from ordinary physicians ? It was admitted through- 
out the profession that the disease of which the Emperor 
died was one caused by the presence of microbes, and still 
they followed the old-fashioned practice which was in vogue 
before disease germs were understood, and they refused 
medicine which is especially adapted to act upon micro- 
organisms. All this shows that there is something more 
than ignorance to be overcome, for it is prejudice and 
superstition and a blind adherence to fatal customs that 
stand in the way of the proper valuation of new discoveries. 


I hope, and I do not entertain any doubt, that the time is not 
far distant when my discovery will be recognized, so that 
the microbe killer shall put a stop to such slaughters, and 
men who are guilty of them shall have to follow some 
other occupations ; for I am quite convinced that cases like 
those of the Emperor of Germany and of General Grant 
would readily yield to the microbe killer if it were properly 

Cases, however, have come under my own immediate ob- 
servation, which are more noteworthy than those. While I 
was in San Francisco arranging to start Factory No. 10, I 
met an old gentleman, seventy-one years of age, who had 
lost one arm. He came to my office and explained that as 
a result of accident a cancer had formed on the palm of his 
hand. He had advice for it, and was under doctors' care 
for some years, but it did not get better. Instead, it per- 
sistently grew worse, until it endangered his life. Every 
known remedy at that time was tried, but to no purpose, 
and finally the physicians amputated the arm below the 
elbow. But this did not stay the disease, for the man's 
blood was full of cancer microbes, and no medicine had 
been used to destroy them. Consequently the disease broke 
out anew, as of course it was bound to do. Sores and ulcers 
formed around the stump, and again he applied to his phy- 
sician. Fifteen had given their advice, but they could do 
nothing except to advise that the arm should be amputated 
again higher up. He was considering this suggestion when 
I saw him. His condition was terrible. Red spots were 
over his face. His left arm was covered with scrofulous 
sores, and cancer was developing under the arm. He asked 
my opinion, and I gave it to him honestly. I told him 
plainly that I could not cure him, as his age was against 
him. I said : " You see we must purify the blood entirely 
before all cancer disappears. There is no use in using the 
knife." These were the words I used, because my business 
demands that I tell just what I think. I cannot afford to 
make promises which I am not able to keep. I explained 




that it was true that I had cured many cases of cancer, but 
that in his case the disease had gone too far, and age was 
another obstacle. It was necessary to remove all living mi- 
crobes and micro-organisms before a cure could be effected, 
and even under more favorable circumstances I could not 
hope to do it in less than nine months, when the system 
was so filled with them as was his. In fact I told him I did 
not think that he would see any improvement in less time 
than that. But the old gentleman had confidence in me, 
and faith in my medicine, and he determined to give it a 

I gave him the strong No. 2, with instructions to take as 
much of it as he found the system would stand, which was 
from four to six wine-glassfuls daily, and I also supplied him 
with No. 3, with which to treat locally the stump and other 
arm. I advised him to soak some cotton wool with the 
microbe killer, and to keep it on the most painful places. 
He followed my instructions rigidly, and I saw no more of 
him for three weeks. Throughout the whole course of his 
disease he had suffered agonizing pain, from which he could 
obtain no relief except in constant dosing with morphia. 
His system was suffering from this, for it did not help the 
cancer, and he was fearful that it might become, if it had 
not already done so, a habit that he would not get rid of. 
When he called upon me again, however, he told me that 
the pains had so much diminished that the morphia was no 
longer necessary, and that he had without an effort stopped 
the use of it entirely. He had sound, refreshing sleep, and 
his appetite was greatly improved. He continued to get 
better. The pains did not return, the ulcers put on a 
healthy appearance and began to heal, and at the end of six 
months he called upon me and said that he was entirely cured, 
with the exception of one small spot. He had increased 
thirty-six pounds in weight during the time he had been 
taking the microbe killer, of which he had had in all seven- 
teen gallons. This was a very free use of the medicine, but 
I doubt if he would have derived the same benefit if he had 


taken less, for his case was a very bad one, and the disease had 
advanced to a stage where, had it not been checked, it must 
soon have terminated fatally. The entire system must have 
been in a state of fermentation, and from experience I know 
that the body must be, as it were, soaked with the medicine 
before the full benefit can be derived from it. The cessation 
of pain, however, which occurred so soon, showed that the 
microbes were yielding to the treatment and probably per- 
ishing, but then the blood remained to be purified, and the 
general system had to be built up. 

This case is in many respects remarkable. It shows that 
it was not necessary to remove a limb, and that, notwith- 
standing the age of the patient and the progress of the can- 
cer, it is quite possible by a rational treatment to get rid of 
this terrible complaint. Physicians well know how very 
seldom an operation is successful in cancer, and still they 
go on having recourse to the knife, as though feeling that 
they must do something, and not having the moral courage 
to admit that they have not the ability to cure. When an 
operation is performed in a case of cancer, the entire dis- 
eased portion must be removed, but more than that, the 
surgeon must be sure that he has not left behind one single 
germ of disease, for- as certain as he has done that, the 
cancer will reappear in a very short time. Now if the can- 
cer microbes were confined to the ulcer, it might be possible 
by removing enough of the healthy flesh to get them away, 
and this is the theory that the physician works upon. 
But it is not so. The germs get into the blood in a very 
short time, and thus circulate through the system. It must, 
therefore, be evident to everybody that an operation at this 
stage of the disease is absolutely useless. It is worse than 
that, because it invariably tends to the formation of new 
ulcers not in the neighborhood of the old sores, but possibly 
in various parts of the body, and thus the second condition 
of the patient Is worse than the first. 

I was satisfied, when I saw the wonderful effects of the 
microbe killer in this old gentleman, that I should have had 


no difficulty in curing the Emperor Frederick of Germany, 
for his case was not nearly as severe. Nature has told me 
repeatedly, too, that if a tree be blighted or the sap be in any 
way diseased, it cannot be cured by pruning the branches, 
a device which would only have the effect of intensifying 
the disease in other portions of the tree. The sap must be 
freed from bacteria, and purified ; and then, and then only, 
does the tree itself become healthy again and show its green 
leaves and put on a healthy appearance. The bulletins 
issued by the doctors about the Emperor of Germany all 
seemed to strengthen my conviction that medical science is 
a fraud of the grossest kind ; and it is the public who are 
the sufferers if this thing be allowed to go on. It is now 
under the protection of the law, on the principle that physi- 
cians hold human life in their hands, and that therefore the 
people should be guarded against placing themselves un- 
knowingly at the mercy of unqualified people. As a straw 
showing which way the wind blows, however, I may men- 
tion that, even as I write this, a report has come from Massa- 
chusetts to the effect that an association of " irregulars " has 
been formed in that State entitled the Massachusetts Con- 
stitutional Liberty League. The object of this body is to 
resist restrictive legislation or any legislation suggested and 
supported by physicians as a body. In one of the resolu- 
tions passed at the meeting when the society was organized, 
the patrons of so-called irregular practice were charged that 
they owe it to those who have served and saved them after 
the doctors had utterly failed to cure or even benefit them, 
to sustain them in the struggle for constitutional liberty. 
This at least indicates that the movement has begun, which, 
if carried on, will put a stop to the work of a privileged 
class and allow the full development of such discoveries as 

The instruments of the surgeon are the means of destroy- 
ing more lives in our hospitals and colleges than are the 
weapons of all our desperadoes and law-breakers. An assas- 
sin makes quick work too with his victim. But in the 


surgical ward of a hospital the patient is killed by a slow 
process, and if he protests against the suffering to which he 
is subjected, he is quieted with morphia or chloroform. I 
have had many hundreds of patients come to my office and 
tell me how this or that specialist removed a limb or a breast 
for cancer, and then sent the patient away with an empty 
pocket to realize that the disease was not cured, and to find 
only too soon that it was reappearing elsewhere with more 
virulence than before. This must be where the microbes 
are in the blood, bringing it to a state of fermentation, evi- 
dence of which is readily perceptible in the sallow or pale- 
yellow color of the skin, especially where the capillary 
blood-vessels are usually most apparent. 

The practice of surgery is growing worse, and the down- 
ward process has been advanced chiefly here by the mis- 
taken notion that good surgery means handiness with the 
knife. We have plenty of men who are quite reckless in 
cutting a person to pieces, and they do it, if not skilfully, 
yet with a good deal of sang froid. But he is a better sur- 
geon who saves a limb than he who amputates it, and when 
that fact comes to be better acted up to the people will be 
better served. The use of instruments is abused, but there 
seems to be a mania among medical men for using them, 
and if they cannot operate on the living man they lose not 
an hour in cutting up a dead one, hardly waiting in their 
anxiety to know that he is dead. It is more than likely 
that, if the old gentleman in San Francisco referred to 
above, had come to me before he had had his hand removed 
he would never have had it amputated. It would have been 
just as easy to save that as it was to save the arm from the 
second operation. When weeds first appear in a garden it 
is easy to get rid of them, but if once they are allowed to 
shed their seeds it is more difficult ; and if they are allowed 
to go to seed several times, it may require years of constant 
work before they can be exterminated and the land made 
clean. This is a natural law, and it applies alike to plants 
and animals, including mankind. 


As these sheets were passing through the press I received 
the following communication : 

February, 1890. 


Dear Sir : Since writing a testimonial in behalf of your wonder- 
ful medicine, " The Microbe Killer," I have been thinking there 
would be nothing amiss in placing before you the particulars as 
to how I used it. My experience with compound oxygen gave me 
a full understanding of the benefit and relief to be had from in- 
halation, and being supplied with the inhaling outfit I soon thought 
to try your valuable remedy in the same way, and I now place my 
late experience before you, hoping that you will investigate the 
matter and thus further and faster give relief to many suffering as 
I have been. If opportunity affords please examine Drs, Starkey 
and Palen's inhaling outfit. That is what I am using. I fill to 
the line with pure water and place the bottle in a tin cup over 
half full of cold water, never failing to place a bit of tin or some 
little thing on the bottom of the cup to prevent breaking. Then 
put the cup on a stove and heat just a little hotter than you can 
bear a finger in. This is not so particular unless the patient is 
very weak, then so much heat will produce a faint feeling. The 
heat and length of time for inhaling must be governed by the 
patient's feelings. Never put the Microbe Killer into the inhaler 
until heated and just ready to use. The little measure with the 
above-named outfit is what I use once full at every inhalation, 
and I find it quite enough, which is about a teaspoonful. The 
next thing is to be careful and not rush this heating process. 
Experience taught me that the work can be carried on too rapidly. 
The system must be built up and regulated in proportion. Many 
times I have left off inhaling for several days, but now I have no 
fears, and twice in twenty-four hours and sometimes oftener is my 
usual way of doing. Then as I stated in my former letter, a soft 
pad saturated with Microbe Killer should be placed on any part 
where there is pain, with sufficient dry linen over. Then place a 
hot brick, or iron, against the pad and allow the heat to be all 
that can be borne, repeating and repeating if necessary. But 
my experience has been that one heating has never failed to relieve. 
I must say that in all these years of suffering I have never tried 


any thing that gave such astonishing relief in every particular as 
your Microbe Killer. Should these lines strike you forcibly and 
an investigation follow, I shall ever be ready to give my experi- 
ence or answer questions at any time. 

With every confidence in your success, and with thanks to God 
and to you for your untiring efforts, I am 



This letter is given without alteration or amendment. It 
is valuable not only as a testimony to the effectiveness of the 
Microbe Killer but as indicating another way in which it may 
be employed with direct advantage, especially in low cases 
where the patient is unable to drink it, as in affections of 
the throat and air passages. We meet with patients some- 
times where the stomach is in an extreme condition of debil- 
ity, or possibly the lining membrane of the organ may be 
ulcerated, and in all these inhalation is easier, and if perse- 
vered in fully as effectual. Any form of inhaler where a 
gentle heat can be applied will do for the purpose, or one 
may be easily improvised. All that is needed is a wide- 
mouthed bottle with two holes in the cork. Through one 
of these pass a straight glass tube open at the top and reach- 
ing down to within an inch of the bottom of the bottle. 
Through the other insert another glass tube bent at an obtuse 
angle and extending down only just below the cork. Fill 
this bottle two-thirds full of water as Mrs. Castleman directs 
and stand it in a tin cup half filled with water at a tempera- 
ture of about 120. Air passes down the straight pipe through 
the water to which the Microbe Killer has now been added, 
and the vapor is inhaled through the bent tube. 

Unfortunately, most of the patients who come to us now 
are suffering from chronic complaints, that is, diseases of 
long standing. The system in these is a mass of fermenta- 
tion. Some are rotten throughout, and they have been 
brought into that condition under the care of the faithful 
family doctor, over a period possibly of years. When they 
come to us they want to be cured " right away." They 





have had any amount of patience while their physician was 
bungling and experimenting, but the instant they think they 
see a chance of getting well they want to be there without 
any further delay. Now this cannot be done. When a dis- 
ease has been years in the system it has become almost a 
part of it. Indeed, there are instances where an old com- 
plaint having been apparently removed, another, in a differ- 
ent form, makes its appearance, showing that an abnormal 
condition has become so much a part of the being as to be 
rendered almost normal. In a chronic disease the entire 
body is more or less involved. But when the trouble has 
been of short duration only it may be but local ; or if not, 
it certainly has not acquired the same hold upon the consti- 
tution. It is therefore very clear why a chronic disease 
requires greater patience and more steady perseverance if 
we would remove it entirely. 

The example of the weeds in the garden illustrates this 
again. Where they are few and of but short duration they 
yield readily to our efforts for their removal, but when they 
have seeded through several seasons they resemble a chronic 
disease in man, and are more difficult to deal with and 
require a longer time. Then note the effect of weeds, and 
our illustration goes further. Observe a field of corn where 
the land is clean and in good order, and compare it with 
the adjoining field, where, although the land may be of the 
same nature, it is covered with weeds. In the one the corn 
is strong and vigorous, the stalks and leaves are clean, and 
the plants show every indication of thriving. In the other 
the stalks are small and slender, the leaves are sickly and 
pale in color, and in every probability there is evidence of 
fungus having attacked it. This, if left to itself, feeds upon 
the unthrifty plants, and soon they die for want of air and 
sustenance, crowded out of existence by a host of enemies 
that followed quickly on the impoverished condition caused 
by the weeds surrounding them. So in the case of a person 
suffering from chronic disease. He has something that, like 
the weeds, impoverishes the soil, feeds on his life blood, 


and gradually drags him down to death. Then where a 
neglected cornfield is cleaned and the weeds removed you 
may have observed how it looks shocked ; it has an appear- 
ance as though it were going to die, and continues so until 
it gets a start. Then, there being nothing around it to draw 
nourishment away from the soil or to deprive it of the 
vivifying effects of the air, it grows thicker and stronger, 
blossoms, bears fruit, perfects its seed, and, having fulfilled 
its mission, it dies of old age. 

It is necessary I should mention these things in order to 
carry conviction to the mind of the great public concerning 
the methods of Nature in working out her laws. I write to 
instruct, but not for the benefit of those who acquired their 
wisdom in medical schools and colleges. Their bread and 
butter is obtained as the fruits of what they learned at those 
places, and not from what it is my province to prove. De- 
prive them of their teachings and you deprive them of their 
present means of living, and their plan and mine are not 
the same. I want to enlighten the public, to teach them 
that things which they have hitherto felt to be complicated 
and difficult to understand are simple and quite within the 
comprehension of all. But the college practitioner would 
hide these things from the people and keep them in igno- 
rance. He conceals Nature. He makes her works appear 
mysterious. He describes them in terms that the people 
do not understand. He keeps his patient in the dark that 
he may not know the devices that are used to take money 
from his pockets. 

When I read of the wonderful progress of medical science, 
of the triumphs of medicine and surgery, and so on, and 
then think of the number of cases I have cured which medi- 
cal science had abandoned, and of the unfortunate people 
who have come to me with limbs sacrificed to professional 
ignorance, I am shocked at the deceptions that are practised. 

When I see people who have been ruined by doctors' 
bills, left sometimes with large families of children depend- 
ant on them and almost without bread to eat ; when mothers 


and fathers have come to me, and with tears in their eyes 
have told me of their misfortunes and how every thing they 
had has been sacrificed in the vain hope of recovering their 
health, I should be less than a man if I were to hide my 
light under a bushel and refuse to help the needy when I 
know that I have the means to do so. No, rather will I set 
my light high up that the whole world may see it and 
benefit by its rays. None need look if they do not want it, 
but it is certain that they who do look will be anxious to 
investigate and to ascertain for themselves whether the 
statements I make are true. I solicit investigation, for 
every thing I say will bear it, and it is gratifying to know 
that others can test my sincerity. 

What medical science writes about is within the reach of 
all, although only those who have been duly trained can 
comprehend the mysteries and the technicalities with which 
the popular mind and understanding are befogged. But 
some things can be known. We know, for example, that 
there are thousands of medicines and combinations to cure 
as many alleged different forms of disease ; we know that 
there are many diseases which are classed as incurable, and 
that whoever is attacked with them must die ; we know 
that there are numberless different forms of instruments 
with which to operate upon the human body, to amputate 
limbs, remove bones, cut out diseased tissues, and mangle 
the human frame. We know that besides these there are 
hundreds of different forms of implements with which to 
place the body, or parts of it, in suitable positions whereby 
to facilitate the movements of the microbes, for if their 
action be impeded the blood thickens and pain is the result ; 
and many of the devices for this purpose are exceedingly 
ingenious. We know that ice is used in some cases, hot 
water in others, and cold water again in others. We know 
that some are burned with caustic, others are thumped with 
sticks or pounded with the hands ; some are covered with 
plasters, others are encased in rubber, and others galvanized 
and electrified. And all these things and a thousand others 
simply to kill microbes. 


The profession own some of the finest laboratories and 
colleges in the country, hundreds of thousands of dollars 
have been spent upon them, and new doctors go out from 
these in troops every year, all trained in medical ethics and 
the doctrines of medical science, all qualified under the law 
to practice medicine and surgery, all privileged to kill, all 
freely sustained and protected by the people and the Legis- 
latures. They ask, and they have. Any legislation they 
want is accorded them. They hold the lives of the people 
in their hands. Their certificate can set the law in motion, 
or it can close the courts. They can convict the prisoner 
or acquit him. They can commit a man to a lunatic asylum, 
or permit him to exercise the privileges of a citizen. Their 
authority may at times be above that of the courts, for no 
judge will dare take the responsibility of defying a doctor's 
opinion when life or great interests are involved. No 
power is greater than that which we sometimes see wielded 
by a legally endowed physician. In addition to this he has 
the privilege of our homes. He is entrusted with secrets 
which not even the lawyers know of. He holds in his 
power not only the lives, but the reputations of families. 
He has it at his will to blast the record of persons who 
before the world are immaculate. He is the receptacle of 
knowledge about private things such as exists nowhere else, 
not even in the church, and nothing but his honor guards 
it. It is a vast power and responsibility, and people do not 
always bear it in mind, but it is all given by the law, and it 
exists as a prerogative obtained with the piece of parch- 
ment that carries with it the dignity of a doctor's degree. 

This has been going on from early times, and still young 
people die and disease is neither prevented nor cured. We 
all know these things, or we can know them by a little 
thought and consideration, but we do not think of them, 
and so they pass unheeded. But here comes a man who 
sets the whole institution at defiance, who is prepared to 
antagonize the whole organization of medical science. He 
brings you a jug with a liquid, whose chief constituent is what 





the body most needs for its existence, and he claims and 
shows by indisputable proof that he can do with that liquid 
what the doctors with all their science, study, and ex- 
perience, cannot do. The discovery is an unusual one. It 
involves so much that people have a just claim to insist 
upon complete conviction. They are right in demanding 
absolute proof. The risk is too great to justify any one 
being satisfied with a mere assertion. When anybody is 
sick he does not want to experiment with himself, or to be 
experimented on by others ; he wants to be cured. He must 
find something that is useful, not something that will prob- 
ably prove ineffectual, and which may be injurious. I offer 
to cure all diseases with but one remedy, and to stop chil- 
dren dying of disease, for of course I cannot prevent acci- 
dents in all cases that are taken in time, and where my 
instructions are faithfully followed. This is undertaking a 
great deal, and it would be worse than an error on my part 
to make it, unless I knew that I could carry it out. I have 
this certainty. It is no supposition, no theory. I have the 
experience and the proof, and I wish every one to convince 
himself as fully as may be necessary. 



WHAT have I done in this writing? I have explained 
the cause of sickness, and shown that drugs cannot kill 
microbes, or, to put it differently, that they cannot purify 
the blood without killing the patient. I have described my 
own sickness, and how I cured myself, although I am not 
a doctor. I have told how I also cured everybody who 
used the microbe killer in time and according to instructions, 
using it in sufficient quantities to purify the blood and to 
build up the system. Nobody can deny that I have done 
this ; nobody does deny it. My imitators are evidence in 
my favor, for if I had not succeeded I should not have been 
imitated, and they have by their conduct testified to the merits 
of the microbe killer. My own experiences in the courts 
are also evidence, and they go to show also that I have 
discovered something worth fighting for. The medical press 
and physicians generally take such an interest in me as they 
never took before. They decry me as an ignorant man, one 
who knows nothing about medicine, or any thing but the 
raising of beets and cabbages, a useful thing to know, by the 
way, and an honorable business too. Possibly florists and 
nursery-men could tell the doctors a little about things 
that belong to their profession, and which they ought to 
know, for botany is not taught in their medical colleges 
here, although in Europe it is justly esteemed an essential 
part of a medical education. Then after abusing me for 
ignorance, they cry that I am killing people with poisons, 
and in the same breath they pray : " Oh, Heaven aid us, 



and make these microbe killers harmless ! Lord, protect 
our profession ! " (Vide Appendix.) 

Rest assured if I had killed anybody the doctors would 
not have been content to talk about it. They would have 
had me in jail long ago. The law gives them the power, 
and they are not likely to waive their rights. They would 
have prosecuted me relentlessly. The public will not be 
deceived by their talk about my killing my patients. If I 
had ever done such a thing I should not be free now to pen 
these words, and any appeal to Congress for relief would 
have been useless. It should be sufficient testimony to the 
worth of my discovery and to my not having killed or injured 
any one, that within two years the people have taken this 
thing into their own hands, that they have formed com- 
panies, spent money, erected seventeen factories, and ex- 
tended their operations not only throughout the United 
States but into Canada and England. That the microbe killer 
has succeeded wherever it has been introduced, means that it 
is at least worthy of investigation and trial. It means also 
that it possesses merits which commend it to the people. 
In short, knowing what I do about it, knowing that it is 
capable of doing much good, and with the testimony that I 
have to its success, I should not be warranted in withholding 
it. It is a duty of all of us to benefit our fellows when we 
can, and I should be no more justified in retaining the 
microbe killer for my own private use, than I should be in 
refusing to help my neighbor whose house might be afire. 

I have not yet referred to the value of my discover}'- in 
the treatment of leprosy. More about that will have to be 
said, but there is no doubt that it is beneficial, and that the 
leprosy microbe can be destroyed, that too with the same 
medicine that saves the lives of little children. I make no 
unreasonable demand, therefore, when I ask for some credit 
to be given me, and if further I can preserve the lives of any 
of the reader's friends I shall feel well compensated for the 
publication of my book, and for all the slander, vituperation, 
and trouble that I have had to submit to. 


I now come to the question : How can we cure disease 
and preserve life ? The answer to this problem is simple ; 
Use the microbe killer ; read this book and act up to instruc- 
tions. But do not wait till sickness comes upon you. 
Prepare for it by a careful perusal of all that I have 
written. A clear understanding will thus be obtained of 
the nature of disease, of the principles upon which it must 
be treated, and of the only remedy which fully meets all 
requirements and enables the patient to save the expense 
and delay of consulting a doctor. For not only is the 
microbe-killer effectual in doing all that I promise for it, 
but it brings a certain remedy home to everybody, so that 
doctors' bills are saved. It simplifies treatment. Every- 
body who follows me in my statements will comprehend 
the cause of disease, and will have a cure at hand. Valu- 
able time is often lost even in sending for a doctor. People 
do not want him if they can help it. They do not want to 
pay out the money which his attendance involves. But 
here with the microbe killer ready near by no time need be 
wasted, and it can be used at once and all trouble and 
annoyance will be spared. 

As already explained every thing created is from the first 
in danger of destruction. Nature demands change. Just 
as every particle of matter is in motion, so in like manner 
an alteration of form is a universal law. The first breath 
that a young child takes in all probability implies the intro- 
duction of microbes, even if there were none derived from 
the parent. I have already referred to this, but a little 
more elucidation may be desirable, as I write to throw as 
much light as possible upon the subject. There is no mere 
supposition about this question. Microbes are not a theory. 
We know what they are and where they most abound. 
Pasteur exposed twenty flasks containing clear broth in the 
open air in the country on the sea level, and very soon eight 
had become affected with micro-organisms and were ferment- 
ing. On the Jura Mountains only five out of twenty fer- 
mented, while at a height of six thousand feet above the 


sea only one was affected. This showed what has since 
been verified, that the higher the altitude the fewer the 
microbes. They are also increased in the neighborhood of 
human dwellings, and when the air is still they have a ten- 
dency to settle downwards, showing merely that they are 
heavier than the atmosphere. The aeroscope is an instru- 
ment devised by M. Pouchet for collecting dust from the 
air, and it is found to consist chiefly of remnants of articles 
in use, generally in the form of impalpable dust, particles 
of inorganic matter, sometimes pollen of flowers, and the 
spores of minute vegetals, moulds, and microbes. Experi- 
ments have shown that dry dust and earth, especially from 
hospitals, is filled with micro-organisms, but that the evap- 
oration of water from the ground does not carry them with 
it. Their existence was shown microscopically more than 
two centuries ago, but their activity as agents in organic 
life was not recognized. 

Last year a valuable paper on the subject was read by Dr. 
Samuel N. Nelson, of Boston, before the American Academy 
of Medicine, which I propose to notice more fully in the 
Appendix to this volume, but he quotes an opinion as to the 
use of these micro-organisms which aptly comes in here. 
Some are doubtless harmless in the human body so far as 
the production of disease is concerned, but it has long been 
thought that they accomplish a great work in Nature. The 
yeast plant, for example, does not give rise to dangerous 
symptoms when taken into the system ; on the contrary, 
it is frequently employed as a curative agent, yet its powerful 
influence is understood all the world over. 

Sir William Robertson writes thus : " Without microbes 
there could be no putrefaction, and without putrefaction 
the waste materials thrown off by the animal and vegetable 
kingdoms could not be consumed. Instead of being broken 
up as they are now, and restored to the earth and air in a 
fit state to nourish new generations of plants, they would 
remain as an intolerable incubus on the organic world. Plants 
would languish for want of nutriment, and animals would 


be hampered by their own excreta and by the dead bodies 
of their mates and predecessors in short, the circle of life 
would be wanting an essential link. A large proportion of 
our food is prepared by the agency of micro-organisms. We 
are indebted to certain bacteria for our butter, cheese, and 
vinegar. Our daily bread is made with yeast, and to the 
yeast plant, discovered independently by Cagniard de la 
Tour and Schwann in 1836, we owe our wine, beer, and 
spirituous liquors. As the generator of alcohol this tiny 
cell plays a larger part in the life of civilization than any 
other tree or plant." 

The sea is teeming with microbes, but not of the kind 
that we find in the air, and it is ascertained that these latter 
rarely extend more than one hundred and twenty miles 
from land, and generally not as far. Their number in a 
room depends on the number of people present. This has 
been shown by carefully conducted experiments. Thus the 
increase on a free day at a public museum is about six hun- 
dred per cent, over the amount on a pay day, and if the num- 
ber in an empty public hall be represented as 100, the increase 
during a meeting will be equal to 432. Professor Frankland 
found that in a barn in which wheat was being thrashed it 
was easy to count eight thousand as falling upon a single 
foot of surface in one minute, showing the immense number 
that exist in dry vegetable matter awaiting only heat and 
moisture to multiply and induce fermentation. 

These facts are important as indicating the precautions 
that should be taken in a sick-room, especially quiet, and 
the absence of all persons who are not absolutely necessary. 
Temperature is an important factor in the process of fer- 
mentation, and it seems to have some relation to the 
proportion of microbes in the atmosphere. Thus there are 
fewest in January, and if the number in that month be taken 
as unity, they increase and diminish in about this ratio : 
February, 4; March, 6 ; April, 7 ; May, 8 ; June 13^ ; July, 
16 ; August, 26^ ; September, 1 1 ; October, 9 ; November, 
5 ; December, 5. 




When a young child is sick, no matter what the age be, no 
time should be lost, but the progress of the disease should be 
checked immediately with microbe killer. For the medicine 
may be used with perfect safety to the youngest child, even 
to one only a few hours old. It cleanses the blood, pre- 
vents unhealthy fermentation, and is beneficial in all diseases 
to which children are subject. I have had considerable ex- 
perience with children, and have found that when the 
microbe killer is used regularly children seldom have trouble 
of any kind, thus proving that it acts as a preventive as well 
as a cure. This might be expected, because by the habitual 
use the system is kept in good order and microbes are 
destroyed as fast as they appear. Children are fond of it. 
The flavor is agreeable and they take it readily, and, when 
they are allowed to do so regularly, their skins become 
perfectly clear and healthy. The capillary circulation be- 
comes normal, the little ones have rosy cheeks, and not a 
pimple or spot upon their bodies. 

We can preserve wood and stone from fungi ; it is natural 
therefore that we should preserve the body, as my medicine 
proves that we can. It only needs to be known to every 
family as it is to me, and children will no longer be down 
with measles, scarlet-fever, or any of the other troubles of 
childhood. They will take the microbe killer freely in time, 
when the very first symptoms appear, and they will hear no 
more of such epidemics. In fact, even if the medicine is not 
used habitually, it should be taken whenever any disease is 
prevalent and it will protect the person from an attack. 

It may be thought that by constant use its effects will be 
lost, but it is not so. Some medicines, especially many 
aperients and cathartics, do act in that way. They produce 
an immediate action on the bowels, and a torpidity follows, 
just as the action of some medicine is cumulative, like 
arsenic. So no effect may be produced at first, and then 
when a sufficient amount is in the system poisonous symp- 
toms supervene. 

But the microbe killer is a tonic. It never loses its power 


of killing micro-organisms, and is more effective the longer 
it is persevered with, and it acts constantly, strengthening 
the system, purifying the blood, and supplying food to the 
blood and tissues that nature demands. It may therefore 
be used safely and advantageously at all times, and it is 
essential when contagious diseases are prevalent, no matter 
what names be given to them, whether typhoid or scarlet- 
fever, small-pox, cholera, influenza, or what not. If your 
child has already been in the doctor's hands, and even if he 
has given it up, take my advice, ask him to send in his bill, 
give up his noxious drugs and poisonous medicines, and 
avail yourself of my discovery, 

A gentleman in Dallas, Texas, wrote me and said : " Mr. 
Radam, your microbe killer cured our baby, and I can 
hardly find words to express my gratitude. We expected 
it would die. The doctor told us he had done all he could, 
and advised us to give it no more medicine. He gave up 
all hope and left. He had no sooner done so than the wife 
of one of our neighbors came in and told us of your microbe 
killer. We read your circular, and, feeling that the child 
would die, we determined to try it. We warmed the medi- 
cine slightly, then wrapped the child in flannels, and poured 
the microbe killer all over the body. We also used a little 
as an injection, mixed with starch, and gave the child three 
teaspoon fuls internally. Then the child was wrapped in 
warm dry flannels, and, to our surprise, in half an hour 
it was asleep, and not asleep only, but it slept quietly 
till early morning, and then awoke laughing and free from 
pain. It nursed freely, and the milk was not rejected by 
the stomach. We continued the medicine ; the child con- 
tinued to improve, and is now living." 

For aught I know to the contrary it still lives. The case 
is instructive, for if the father had been content with merely 
administering the microbe killer internally, I doubt if he 
would have cured the child. Its illness had advanced too 
far, and it was necessary to use the medicine externally, as 
well as internally, to attack the microbes, wherever they 


could be reached. The case shows also that we may be 
able to rescue a patient, even from the edge of the grave, if 
we go the right way to do it, and if we are able to act 
with an understanding of Nature's laws and methods, so 
that we may see the importance of using the medicine 
in such a way as to permeate all the tissues, and thus as it 
were soak the body, just as the railway tie is soaked, as I 
have before explained. 

The microbe killer contains no drugs of an organic char- 
acter. It is simply a solution of gases, which pass readily 
through the tissues, much as the perspiration passes through 
the pores of the skin, and thus they get into the blood and 
circulate throughout the system. It will be seen, therefore, 
how important it is to thoroughly carry the remedy every- 
where, to leave no part of the body free to enable the 
microbes to increase ; and the facility with which this 
medicine passes thus into every tissue and to the remotest 
parts, by means of the capillary vessels, adds very much to 
its great value. 

In serious diseases which run their course quickly, and in 
the treatment of which prompt action is important, such as 
typhoid and scarlet-fevers, measles, small-pox, and the like, 
external applications are also necessary and important. 
The skin absorbs the active principle of the medicine, al- 
most as freely and as quickly, sometimes even more quickly 
than the absorption through the stomach, and its effects 
must in such diseases be obtained as rapidly as possible. 
But in ordinary diseases, especially where treatment can be 
begun without delay, internal dosing in sufficient quantities 
will effect a cure, and, as already stated, it acts as a preven- 
tive when taken during health. 

Some doctors have asserted that the microbe killer con- 
tains poisonous drugs. It is a bare assertion, made in 
complete ignorance of what it really is ; but the folly of 
such statements is apparent on its face, for if such were the 
case how could it be administered in large doses to children 
without injuring them ? As a matter of fact, it contains, as 


I have said, no drug at all. If it were what these doctors 
say, it would soon kill itself. No poisonous medicine such 
as they describe would be allowed to exist. The people 
would soon find it out, and they would not have it. The 
microbe killer is harmless, and that it cures all who use it 
according to directions is an assertion that proves itself. 

When a child is taken sick, no matter what the sickness 
may be or what name the doctor chooses to apply to it, re- 
member what I said at the beginning of this book. The 
disease is caused by a microbe, possibly a special microbe, 
and your duty then is to use the medicine immediately, as 
long as necessary, and as freely as possible, until the child is 
cured, as it most assuredly will be. Young children require 
less than adults, and I have found that small people can do 
with less than larger ones, as might be anticipated from the 
method by which the medicine is known to operate._ It is 
not necessary, for example, to use as much to secure a com- 
plete saturation of the tissues in a small body as in a large 
one. For very small children two teaspoonfuls will usually 
suffice for a dose, and this may be repeated as often as 
is necessary, but every six hours is about the frequency that 
I find to answer. The size, age, and temperament of the 
patient all have to be considered. In the treatment of 
wounds, ulcers, boils, or local inflammations, poultices of 
linseed meal saturated with the microbe killer should be 
kept constantly applied to the surface, and the internal 
treatment should be attended to at the same time. Here I 
would again direct attention to the method described by my 
correspondent and patient, Mrs. D. F. C., of Portland, Ore- 
gon, on page 131, whose testimony as to its value in curing 
pain should be conclusive. But it must not be forgotten 
that, whenever employed externally, it should also be used 
internally at the same time. This is necessary. Taken 
internally it purifies the blood, and when used externally 
some may become absorbed ; but its chief value then is 
to relieve pain and to prevent the increase of microbes on 
the injured surface. A wound left exposed or improperly 


attended to becomes a nidus for microbes, sometimes in the 
simplest form, as micrococci or as bacteria or bacilli, but the 
result is the same, whether they be in the form of simple 
cells or as tubular*or spiral bodies. 

Twelve hundred years ago this was known. Paul d'Egeneta 
understood the phenomenon of fermentation and putrefac- 
tion ; and more than two hundred years ago the cause was 
correctly described by Megatus. Surgeons in the sixteenth 
century found that wounds healed better if not exposed to 
the air, and one of the ablest surgeons of that day, Ambrose 
Pare, said that gun-shot wounds which under ordinary cir- 
cumstances would prove fatal, might be cured if kept covered 
and not dressed too frequently. 

The process of fermentation has always been known, at 
any rate so far as history carries us, and it is understood 
among savages, but it was only about the date given that it 
was identified with putrefaction. The air containing micro- 
organisms in large quantities, if these fall upon a wound, or 
an ulcer, there will be some which will find it a suitable place 
for reproduction, and then fermentation, inflammation, sup- 
puration, and possibly gangrene may be the consequence. 
But if this be stopped, as it may be by the prompt applica- 
tion of the microbe killer, the wound heals, the process of 
nature being uninterrupted, and none of those dangerous 
results ensue. The rationale of this must be clear. 

It is my firm conviction, taught me by experience, that if 
a child dies it is from some cause that might be prevented. 
I do not refer to children who inherit disease from parents 
to such a degree that their lives are forfeited as soon as they 
are born, but to all ordinary cases of disease. For example, 
the remedy may be applied too late, or in insufficient doses, 
or in a manner contrary to directions, or it may have been 
given irregularly, or not continued long enough. When 
death occurs in such circumstances it is the fault of the 
nurse, not of the medicine. 

Nothing is easier than to cure children, if action be prompt 
and effective. They are easily affected by disease, but so, 


too, their system readily yields to medicine, and with com- 
petent attention rules are more easily carried out. 

It is much more difficult to cure chronic disease, whether 
it be of years' or only of months' duration. And to return 
to my former similes, the florist finds it in truth more diffi- 
cult to attend to his seedlings and to protect them from 
fungus, than it is to defend children from the attacks of 
microbes, of which the doctors know nothing. 

When a plant has become matured and the wood is hard- 
ened, it can withstand more rough usage, and so it is with 
the human family. Statistics show that there is a greater 
mortality among children than among grown people. A 
child cannot describe its symptoms ; it merely cries with 
pain and discomfort. Then comes the doctor, who guesses 
what kind of microbe has got hold of it, and in accordance 
with his theories he puts up a lot of drugs which are prob- 
ably no antiseptics at all. They do not affect the microbes, 
which go on producing a state of fermentation in the child's 
body, and are possibly encouraged rather than otherwise by 
the medicines that have been administered. In this case the 
child grows worse, the doctor gives it up, and presently it 
dies. The doctor did all he knew, but he was ignorant of 
the true cause of the sickness, and more likely hastened the 
child's decease instead of doing any thing to prevent it. 
What is this but child-murder? Legalized it may be, but 
nevertheless it is increasing mortality where it ought to be, 
and where it can be, diminished. I never see a hearse pass- 
ing my window without deploring the ignorance that prevails 
among the members of that profession whom the law allows 
to carry our lives in their hands. 

The treatment of older children and young people is simi- 
lar to that of young children, only it requires longer time 
usually and more of the medicine to perfect a saturation of 
the body. It also usually requires more time to complete a 
purification of the blood. Chronic diseases require still longer 
time and more medicine. They are long coming, and they 
go slowly. In them the process of fermentation probably 



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,' 'a;'.* 




began years before the disease made itself felt. Then the 
microbes have probably advanced to such an extent that the 
circulation of the blood is impeded, the microbes clogging 
up the vessels, causing pain, and not until then perhaps does 
the person complain of being sick. Even these diseases can 
be cured by the microbe killer if it be taken with enough 
perseverance, so that not only the microbes are destroyed, 
but the red corpuscles of the blood are renovated, the circu- 
lation freed, and the- red color of the skin restored through 
a complete action of the capillary vessels. Young women 
about arriving at maturity should use the medicine freely. 
It purifies the blood, and increases the tone of the system, 
arousing the circulation, so that they would not feel the 
change. In the same way it is useful to women looking 
forward to maternity. It is beneficial to the child, keeping 
the blood in a strong and healthy condition, and assisting 
the mother both before and during confinement. It also 
tends to facilitate the flow of milk, and to render it more 
nutritive to the child. 

Where there is any sickness there is some blood impurity 
that is, microbes are at work, and fermentation to a greater 
or less extent is going on, and the microbe killer is the only 
discovery yet made which directs itself immediately to the 
cause of the disease. 

Ladies can find ample testimony from those of their own 
sex as to the value of my medicine to themselves. There is 
much to discover, and much yet to learn, and it is not my 
wish to keep back any thing that has been ascertained by me 
since I made my first cures. I must therefore touch upon 
this more fully. 

The discharges attending menstruation, when examined 
under a powerful microscope, show blood containing vast 
quantities of microbes. Investigations made among many 
patients always show that the darkest blood is a mass of 
living micro-organisms, and that when women complain 
most of pain in the back, headache, neuralgia, etc., they are 
suffering from these enormous quantities of microbes. 


When women thus affected have taken the microbe killer 
for several months, the character of the discharges changes. 
It becomes red, and when examined it is found to be free 
from microbes ; the woman at the same time suffers no more. 
The headache and pain in the back have left her, the periods 
are more normal and free from inconvenience, and the patient 
puts on a healthy appearance. Her eyes are bright, and her 
complexion is clear, and she has more energy. 

My first discoveries of this kind showed the nature and 
cause of woman's sufferings at these times, and that it is 
Nature again acting on her own laws, the pain and incon- 
veniences being caused by .a process of fermentation as 
usual, and the pain ceasing when the cause of that process 
is removed. 

But such cases are not cured right away. It is absurd to 
suppose that they can be, and it would be wrong for me to 
say that they can. The blood must be purified, and as the 
microbes must be killed, the remedy must be one that 
accomplishes this object and thereby puts a stop to fer- 
mentation. At the same time, no antiseptic can take effect 
until it has entered the cells by passing through their walls, 
and so can be brought into contact with their contents. 
This explains how persons are deceived by those medicines 
which are given to purify the blood, and which have no 
power whatever to destroy the causes which render im- 
purity possible. Medicines which have no effect upon the 
life of micro-organisms cannot purify the blood, and none of 
the medicines used for the purpose do accomplish that end. 
We must have something that kills microbes, and hence the 
value and necessity of my discovery, for, as I have shown, 
there is nothing else that does that without also killing the 

Any one who advertises or claims to be able to purify the 
blood should prove that he does so, and if he will allow 
his medicine to be fairly tested, it is quite easy to ascertain 
whether it will do all that is promised for it, because if it 
cannot prevent fermentation, it certainly cannot do what is 


promised for it ; and if it will do that, it can cure disease 
everywhere, whether in man or other animals. If anybody 
doubts this or fails to understand it, I have tangible, 
visible evidence that I can produce, but I hardly think that 
the people generally will fail to find ample proof in the cures 
I have already effected. These should alone be convincing, 
even though my medicine is the same for all, and I myself, 
in place of being a professor with a long name, am nothing 
more than a close observer of Nature. 

This is certain, that Nature cannot be denied. Whatever 
she teaches is beyond contradiction at the hands of the 
doctors, and medical science, if there be any science in 
medicine, is not in a position to oppose it. But I do not see 
the science. I know the profession is wrong, emphatically 
wrong, and my only wonder is how people can allow them- 
selves to be misled by it. Let me not be misunderstood. I 
do not say that there are not some good and useful medi- 
cines. But those, for instance, which are useful to regulate 
the bowels cannot be called blood purifiers. Even those act 
indifferent ways, some influencing the functions of the liver 
and other organs, others increasing the peristaltic motions 
of the intestines, others again producing an exosmosis from 
the lining membranes, and so on. But none of these actions 
implies a purification of the blood. There are probably 
thousands of medicines sold as blood purifiers. Some of 
them, through being kept constantly before the people, are 
popular, and occasionally they may do some good, or if they 
do not, people think they do. They are announced as being 
free from mineral compounds, and the medicine man declares 
they are made exclusively from herbs, roots, barks, seeds^ 
and so on. Now the fact is that those things would ferment 
and they would promote fermentation in the blood, and to 
prevent that the manufacturer of the compound uses alcohol 
or whiskey as a preservative. If he did not do that the stuff 
would breed microbes in the bottle in which it is sold. 

Any one can prove this for himself by taking some of the 
vegetable compounds, diluting them with water, or make an 


infusion of the roots or herbs, add to them any of the fluids 
or excretions of the body, add the ferment with the medi- 
cine, and keep the mixture closed in a bottle. In a short 
time you will see whether or not the medicine has prevented 
fermentation. You need not be an expert with the micro- 
scope. You will see the process going on rapidly. If, then, 
the medicine that you are asked to take increases fermenta- 
tion, how in the world is it going to cure you ? This 
experiment you can pursue with any of the nostrums that 
are offered to the public and which are prescribed, and you 
can learn for yourself without swallowing them whether they 
are likely to accomplish what is promised for them. Or you 
may take a piece of lean meat, place it in a bottle with any 
of the popular medicines, and see whether they prevent 
fermentation and the formation of microbes. 

This, however, must be remembered : Suppose that any 
particular remedy stands the test. In order that it shall be 
efficient as a medicine it must be of such a nature that it can 
be taken like water, so as to saturate the body, permeating all 
the tissues. A small quantity taken into the stomach is of 
no use. You may take strong alcohol and it will stand the 
test, but can you saturate your body with it? You may, 
indeed, go on experimenting until you have covered all the 
drugs known to the doctors, and still you will not find one 
that will effectually kill microbes without also killing the 

Many things will give relief. Chloroform, morphine, 
mercury, and numberless drugs will, on occasion, do that : 
but relief is not cure. Many persons have told me some 
personally, others by letter that years ago they had some 
form of disease, that they went possibly to some celebrated 
doctor and got well. Then, some years later, they had 
another attack of the same disease, and again they got well 
under some physician's care ; and now they have it again. 
The truth is, these people never were cured. They were 
simply relieved either by a partial suppression of the microbes, 
or by driving them to other parts of the body. 


Persons have often come to me who had suffered from 
cancer. They showed me where it had been removed by 
the knife or checked by plasters. At the time they had 
thought themselves cured, but now evidences of cancer were 
appearing in various parts of their bodies, and it was more 
severe than it had been at first. Cutting away portions of 
the human body that are diseased in that way is evidence 
of the grossest ignorance. If a person have cancer of the 
tongue, a removal of that organ will not cure him. If he 
have cancer in the throat, the removal of a portion will not 
cure him. The amputation of a leper's limbs would not 
remove the leprosy. Whereas, if we can purify the blood, 
there is no occasion even to think of the knife, and this refers 
to almost any kind of surgical operation. 

They say that exceptions prove the rule, and I will name 
one. There are cases where, from some cause or other, 
mortification supervenes on an injury. As soon as that 
process stops, of which Nature gives unmistakable signs, 
then the diseased portion may be safely and rightly re- 
moved ; for, if it be not taken away, and assuming the patient's 
health to continue good, Nature herself would remove it, 
but the process would be slow and the stump would be 

If I had a compound fracture of one of my limbs, I should 
be content to keep the parts in place, keep the wound 
saturated with microbe killer and use it freely internally, 
and I should have no fear for the results. Microbes would 
be prevented interfering with Nature, and I know that 
every thing then would progress satisfactorily. 

Persons whose bodies are mutilated usually die from in- 
flammation that means fermentation, which again means 
microbes ; but if the microbe killer be used intelligently no 
microbes can exist, no fermentation can take place, and, 
consequently, there can be no inflammation. 

We shall always require surgeons. That is certain. There 
are numberless forms of accident and injury where their 
assistance will be necessary, but in all their work the microbe 


killer must fill an important place, since it stops fermentation 
and what the doctors call blood-poisoning, which is simply 
blood filled with microbes. When the value of my discovery 
is fully understood, there will be but little use for surgical 
instruments. We may take any diseased growth on the 
human body, call it lupus or cancer, or a tumor, or what you 
will, there was a time when it had a beginning. In the 
future, when such things are first observed, the microbe 
killer will be used immediately, and thus the growth will be 
stopped and no trouble will ensue. 

During the short time that I have been using the medicine, 
I have seen many cases of cancer, ulcerated sores, abscesses, 
etc., etc., all of which have been cured by a free use of the 
medicine. Not, recollect, by small doses, but with sufficient 
quantities taken regularly and perseveringly. 

If we remove the limb from a tree, and at once stop the 
cut surface and protect it from the atmosphere so that no 
fungus shall be deposited on it, the heart wood will not 
suffer, and the tree will soon protect the part itself by the 
bark growing over it. But if the exposed section be not 
protected, the surface will soon become black from fungoid 
growths, and these will'at times extend throughout the tree, 
of course shortening its life. The same process goes on in 
the human body. A person may be never so healthy, but 
if he lose a limb or become wounded, and microbes are 
allowed to form and enter into the blood, his life may be 
shortened or even lost. On the other hand, if he can pre- 
vent fermentation altogether, the parts must quickly heal, 
and no further injury will be done to the system. 

Antiseptic plasters so-called cannot be of any use. They 
cannot do any good in surgical operations. They cannot be 
used internally, and, consequently, they cannot reach the 
general circulatory system. There must be some internal 
remedy as well, and something that can be used so freely 
that it may saturate all the tissues and thoroughly, as it 
were, soak the body. Most surgical work must cease. The 
removal of limbs for leprosy must be stopped. All cutting 




around the eyes, face, and limbs is unnecessary. Every case 
can be cured through purification of the blood by means of 
the microbe killer. 

I read in the medical papers how patients, especially 
women, after being drugged with chloroform or ether, are 
cut open, diseased portions cut away, and then the parts are 
sewed up again. Accounts go on to show how they lived 
through the ordeal, then the symptoms are reported, the 
action of microbes fs duly chronicled under another name; 
inflammation follows, which is fermentation ; fever ensues, 
with exhausting perspiration ; appetite fails, and the patient 
succumbs destroyed by the destructive action of microbes. 
Yet this is called surgical science ! 

The thoughtful reader must acknowledge that I do not 
exaggerate or state what is not absolutely true. Let him 
go into any hospital and see the machinery devised for 
relieving pain and enabling patients to survive these terrible 
operations. Let him picture to himself, as I have seen it 
sketched in a scientific paper: the surgeon, standing with 
uplifted knife, and clad in a long white gown, ready, before 
fifty or more young students, to open a patient who, having 
first been chloroformed, has just been wheeled into the 
operating theatre. How many of these unfortunate creatures 
survive the operation ? 

Now note the change that will be effected when my own 
discovery becomes known. Here comes a man with a jug 
who takes it to the patient's house. The patient can use it 
himself and cure himself and his family without pain or risk 
by simply removing the microbes from his blood. And 
then because I cure people in this way, and in spite of 
proof that I do, these same surgeons and physicians appeal 
to the public not to trust me, asserting that my medicine is 
poisonous, that it must kill sooner or later, and they try to 
destroy confidence by saying that it is made by a man who 
knows nothing whatever about medical science. " He is no 
doctor," they say. " He has no diploma, knows nothing 
whatever about medicine, and is simply a gardener." Well 


they may go on saying so if it affords them any satisfaction. 
I will go on proving what I can do, and in due time the 
public will have their eyes opened to the backward science 
of the medical faculty, that too at no very distant day. 

A lady came to me at Austin, Texas, who had been under 
medical treatment fifteen years. None could cure her, and 
although relieved occasionally she was worse now than she 
had been years before. At last the doctors recommended an 
operation for the removal of what seemed to be a tumor in 
the abdomen, but to that she would not give her consent, 
for she regarded it justly as a death-risking experiment. 
One of my first experiences was with that lady, and I treated 
her gratuitously. I gave her the microbe killer in doses of 
four to six wineglassfuls every day for about six months. 
Twenty-four hours after beginning the treatment she re- 
ported an improvement in her appetite. Five days after 
that she suddenly vomited a mass of fermented matter the 
size of a hen's egg. She suffered from constant headache 
and her face lacked all color, showing that her blood was in 
a poor condition and fermented. But she gradually im- 
proved. As she grew stronger, which she did slowly but 
steadily, she was able to resume her household duties, a 
thing she had not done for several years. Her terrible pains 
ceased. Her natural functions were restored, and nine 
months from the date of the first treatment by me, she pub- 
lished a statement explaining how she had been cured by the 
microbe killer. As far as I know, that lady is still living and 
in good health, and her case shows that my discovery can 
both cure and heal. 

Healing and curing are very different. A wound may be 
healed and disease be left internally. But where a cure is 
effected the blood must be purified and the disease eradicated 
from the system. A doctor may heal, but he never cures. 

In the same neighborhood was another lady similarly 
affected. She had been constantly under the care of a 
doctor. She suffered from what is known as female diseases, 
and she had an abscess which had been so badly attended to 


that worms visible to the naked eye came from it. The 
doctors had cauterized the wound, they had plastered it over 
with medicaments and tried all the means they knew, but 
they could not heal it. I had some conversation with her 
husband, who said on one occasion : " Mr. Radam, if you 
were to cure the rest of the world you could not cure my 
wife, for her disease is peculiar and there is absolutely no 
cure for it, and I have no hope of any being found." He 
consented, however, to try. I gave him some microbe killer 
and told him how to use it. I knew full well that the abscess 
was only an outlet for the microbes which filled up the 
whole body, and that it was worse than nonsense, for it was 
dangerous, to try to heal that without freeing the system 
itself from the cause of the disease. If I wish to stop water 
running along a channel I must go to the source and stop the 
spring that supplies it. 

Many similar cases came to me. A prominent lady in 
San Francisco once called upon me and, as she had been 
recommended by a friend, she candidly explained to me all 
her ailments. A glance readily told me that she was cura- 
ble. Her breathing was good, and her lungs were evidently 
sound. She appeared to have no organic disease, but only 
that her entire system was in a state of fermentation. She 
explained to me that she could not sleep, sit, or walk. She 
was suffering from extreme nervous depression and irrita- 
bility, and to allay that and to make her life endurable she 
was constantly taking morphine. She had had disease of 
the rectum and bladder and had gone through an operation 
for disease of the womb. She was a great sufferer from 
dyspepsia, and could only at times retain food upon her 
stomach, so that it was necessary to be very careful with her 
diet, and she was a martyr to headache. 

This lady was wife of a senator and had spent a great deal of 
her time in Washington, and having been sick many years she 
had consulted some of the most celebrated doctors at the 
capital. It was evident to me at once, from what she told 
me and from what I could judge for myself, that these 


doctors had never cured her of any thing. They had simply 
relieved her from time to time, and then by using powerful 
and poisonous drugs as local applications only. Of course 
the fermented blood was untouched. It had never been 
freed from microbes and purified, but left to ferment in 
increased ratio, as it always will when the cause of the fer- 
mentation is allowed to increase and multiply. The condi- 
tion she was in was precisely the same as that of many 
hundreds of women at this moment. 

I knew that I could cure her. if she would follow instruc- 
tions, but I had great misgivings whether she would 
persevere long enough, as it was necessary to take time 
and to begin gradually. I explained the law of Nature to 
her, that the medicine must remove all the microbes that 
now abounded in her blood, together with all seeds and 
germs and every thing that would encourage their growth. 
This I told her would require some months, and possibly 
it might be a few months before she would experience any 
marked improvement. It would be necessary then to reno- 
vate and build up the system, all of which would require 
time. But she had confidence. She had heard of the many 
cures I had made in San Francisco, and she believed what I 
told her. She thereupon promised to carry out my instruc- 
tions as faithfully as she possibly could, for she seemed 
to feel that in the microbe killer was her last hope. 

I instructed her to drink the No. I, a mild grade, at first, 
and to take three wineglassfuls every day ; then to warm 
some of the medicine by standing small bottles of it in 
warm water, and to use this as a rectal and vaginal injection 
twice a day. I consented to her using the morphine hypo- 
dermic injection for a time until she should be sufficiently 
recovered to do without it. Soon after the treatment was 
begun very much fermented matter began to be discharged, 
which when examined under the microscope proved to be 
filled with millions of micro-organisms. She saw this for 
herself, and at once her confidence in all I had told her was 
strengthened. Her menstruation always left her extremely 


weak, and her headache was at times unbearable. To re- 
lieve this I advised her to wet a flannel in the microbe 
killer and to bind it around the head till the worst pains 
subsided. I explained to her that the blood thickened by 
microbes was impeded in its circulation, and that that 
necessarily caused pain, but that as the microbes were over- 
come and the blood became purer those pains would cease. 

During the first three weeks she had many very bad days, 
but she persevered faithfully with the medicine as she had 
promised she would, using as much of it daily as she could 
bear, and after the three weeks she began to feel easier and 
to improve. The pains were less severe and her appetite 
became stronger. At the end of two months, after using 
eight gallons of the medicine, she came to report progress. 
At that time her face and body were covered with red spots 
or pimples the color of scarlet-fever, but she felt well and 
took a great deal of exercise around the city. 

She also mailed my circulars to all the friends and ac- 
quaintances she had over this broad land. 

I examined some of the red spots and put the contents of 
one of the pimples under the microscope and what a num- 
ber of little black feathery-looking worms we did see ! My 
patient was wild with joy at the thought that my medicine 
would bring these little things out, fof she never had any 
idea that any such could possibly be in her body. None of 
her doctors had ever told her any thing of the kind, and she 
had no suspicion of them. By continuing the medicine the 
spots gradually disappeared. My patient's skin became 
clear and smooth, and a few weeks later her cheek glowed 
with color and health, and she felt so well that she never 
passed my office without coming in to thank me and to 
shake my hand .and tell me how she was indebted for her 
life to my medicine. She promised me, too, that as long as 
she lived she would be a worker for me and would proclaim 
the value of my discovery everywhere. 

Her cure was slow and gradual, but it was steady. She 
had no relapse, or any falling back at any time. Yet it was 


a long process, and only perseverance and an unflinching 
confidence in me sustained her. She lent a deaf ear to all 
slander, paid no heed to the jeers and false prophecies of the 
doctors, and never believed that she would be killed if she did 
not stop using my medicine. She understood all that. She 
knew that it was nothing but the outpourings of jealousy and 
marks of ignorance and prejudice. But first of all she knew 
that the doctors who talked in this way had failed to cure 
her, although every opportunity had been given them, and 
she was not likely to place much confidence in them when 
they informed her that I used poison, and that if she in- 
sisted on persevering with it the lining membrane of the 
stomach would be destroyed. 

This story was not confined to her. Thousands of pa- 
tients have told me the same thing, how the doctors assured 
them that I should kill them if they followed my treatment. 
That was the tale in Austin, where my discovery first be- 
came known, and it is the same to-day. But if I had ever 
killed anybody, where should I have been to-day ? Cer- 
tainly not in my own house, writing this book. The Medi- 
cal Faculty would have been but too glad to get hold of 
me, to have me indicted for manslaughter, and put me in a 
gaol. The medical profession is powerful. They have 
known how to blindfold the people and keep them in igno- 
rance of the first principles of Nature's laws and operations, 
just as the Salvation Army misleads the ignorant and rules 
its devotees with the terrors of an alleged Satan. 

This lady whose case I have given was entirely and per- 
manently cured by the microbe killer, and she not only 
acknowledged the cure to me, but she gave me the follow- 
ing statement for publication, with the request only that 
her name should be withheld, except to those who might 
with sufficient reason apply for it : 


The benefit received from the use of the microbe killer cannot 
be told in stronger language than I would use. I truly believe it has 
saved my life. I was very much reduced in health by long-con- 


tinued and painful illness, was treated by good physicians and spe- 
cialists, but gradually grew worse, until I was handed one of your 
circulars and commenced at once your medicine. At the com- 
mencement I was so emaciated and in such fever I could hardly 
walk across the floor. Indeed, I felt that my life was of little value, 
and hoped soon to be relieved of my great suffering. I began 
the medicine as directed ; the fever soon left me, and pain grew 
less, and health gradually restored, until I felt like a new person, 
and in six weeks could attend to business and home affairs. I 
have friends in San Francisco who knew how ill I was, and of 
my wonderful recovery. I heartily recommend the Microbe Kil- 
ler to the suffering who may read this, as I feel for humanity, 
and without health life is not worth much, but any who take 
this medicine for a sufficient length of time for restoration I am 
sure will benefit. This to some might seem a broad assertion, 
but I have found it of so much benefit to myself I can speak 
emphatically of it as one of the best medicines in use. I wish 
its success. Truly a friend of humanity, 

I am yours, 

Among my other patients was a young lady who as she 
came into my office sank into a chair in a state of exhaus- 
tion. She was pale, and any one to look at her would have 
pronounced her near her death. She brought with her a 
small quantity of fermented matter that had been thrown off 
from her stomach after taking medicine prescribed by her 
family physician. I placed some on the field of the micro- 
scope, and the sight was so alarming that I wondered at her 
being alive at all. She saw for herself, and I explained it all 
to her, and described exactly the condition she was in. The 
microscope displayed an enormous quantity of micro-organ- 
isms, in the presence of which there must have been the great- 
est discomfort and sense of disease. But bad as the exhibit 
was I felt that the microbe killer would overcome it and I en- 
couraged her. " You are not seriously ill, and can be cured 
without much difficulty," I told her. " The contents of 
the stomach are in a constant state of fermentation. Even 
the medicine you have been taking promotes that process, 


because it supplies food for microbes, without which fermen- 
tation cannot exist. The more you take of it, therefore, the 
worse you will get. As fermentation proceeds, the matter 
gives off gas, the coats of the stomach become irritable, and 
the matter is rejected ; hence while this lasts you never can 
retain any thing on the stomach. If you take a quantity of 
foul water, you cannot sweeten it by putting a little clean 
water into it. If you add something that is food for mi- 
crobes to matter that is already fermenting, you do not stop 
the ferment, nor can you stop it until you put in something 
that destroys the micro-organisms. If this is done with the 
stomach it will then become clear. The fermentation will 
cease. Gas will no longer be given off. The stomach will 
cease to be irritable. It will not throw off its contents, but 
the digestive process will go on regularly and the patient 
will be free from pain and will derive full benefit from food. 
The blood will now become enriched. Impurities will be 
excreted. New blood will be formed, and thus in a short 
time the entire system will undergo a renovation. Powerful 
drugs cannot be used so as to permeate the system, and such 
harmless drugs as you have had given to you merely en- 
courage the growth of microbes and make the disease worse 
than before. Now take a glass of my medicine and you will 
find that it is not rejected, because it almost immediately de- 
stroys the microbes in the stomach, and so checks the process 
of fermentation." I had to use some persuasion at first, be-, 
cause she objected to take any thing more, and as soon as 
she tasted the microbe killer she raised further objections be- 
cause it was, as she described it, " sour." But I talked to her, 
told her that there were no drugs in it, and after some further 
pressing I induced her to drink a large glassful, after which 
she immediately hurried home. The next morning she was 
back at my office, but in a very different mood. She had had, 
as she told me, the first good breakfast in a long time, and it 
had remained on her stomach without producing any incon- 
venience. I promised her that she should be perfectly well 
in three weeks if she would follow my instructions. She did 

Cured, by Microbe Killer. 


so, and my promise was kept. She was perfectly well in the 
time stated, and, as I told her, I wish I never had any more 
difficult cases than hers to treat. Two gallons of the microbe 
killer was what she took. I mention the case not as in any 
way singular but merely as a fair sample of many hundreds 
that have come to me. 

The case illustrated was of a very different character. Mr. 
M. C. Battey was ticket-agent at the office of the Fort Spanish 
Railroad Company, in Canal Street, New Orleans, Louisiana, 
and he first called upon me in the month of July, 1889. The 
photograph taken at the time gives but a faint idea of his 
condition. His body was covered with ulcers. I examined 
him carefully, and found that many of the sores were from 
one quarter to three eighths of an inch deep, and some of 
them from one to two inches in length. They were sup- 
purating, and a discharge was constantly coming from them. 
All the patient could do was to keep them dressed with cot- 
ton wool and bandages, and to remove the fermented matter 
as fast as it accumulated. He had had the best medical ad- 
vice that could be procured. The most accomplished physi- 
cians in the city and elsewhere had seen him, but they had 
not been able to afford him any relief. The fermentation ap- 
peared to become worse instead of better under their treat- 
ment, and when he came to me he had abandoned all hope 
of ever being well. 

He was very much depressed, and it was with tears in his 
eyes that he told me his sad story, describing his long and 
terrible sufferings, the difficulty he had had to support his 
wife and children, the constant and intense pain he had 
undergone, until he felt that he could endure it no longer, 
and was now only wishing for a speedy death. I felt great 
pity for the man, and requested the company to supply him 
with the Microbe Killer free of charge, and endeavor to 
demonstrate through him what the medicine was capable of. 
I asked him only to let me have the photograph. He gave me 
that, from which the illustration is taken. I then promised 
to have him all right in four or five months, although up to 


that time he was gradually wasting away from the constant 
fermentation, almost as though he were affected with leprosy. 
At the end of the period named, he sent a letter, which I 
will allow to speak for itself as follows : 

NEW ORLEANS, November i, 1889. 
Radam's Microbe Killer Company : 

I consider it only your due that I add my testimonial to the 
thousands given you, all breathing praises of the wonderful rem- 
edy discovered by William Radam, and named by him " Microbe 
Killer." To me it has proven a God-sent gift, for to its wonder- 
ful effects I firmly believe I owe my life. 

For the past fifteen monthsT have suffered all the agony a man 
could, covered with ulcers from thighs to neck, on front, back, and 
sides, the result of blood poison, caused by my own impru- 
dence. Over a year ago I had an ulcer appear on my leg, big as 
a hen-egg. To open it I used a large-sized hypodermic needle, 
laying the needle aside without cleaning it with carbolic acid or 
other agent, as I should. When a second ulcer came I used the 
same needle to open it, and thus put into my system all the old 
poison contained within the needle. The effects were terrible 
indeed. Malignant ulcers began to come, often ten at a time, 
on all parts of my body. They caused the most intense suffer- 
ing, day and night. Poisonous pus constantly exuded. They 
would not heal, although I used every agent known. I began to 
lose flesh rapidly, my weight being reduced from one hundred 
and seventy to one hundred and twenty-five pounds. I had no 
appetite, no ambition, no strength. I gave every medicine adver- 
tised, as well as various physicians' prescriptions, a thorough trial, 
and got rapidly worse instead of better. I gave up all hope of 
being cured, and neither my family, friends, nor myself believed I 
could possibly live to see this year out. Finally, owing to the 
persuasions of Mr. Meyers, of the Picayune, I consented to try the 
Microbe Killer as a last resort, and I frankly confess I had no 
faith in it, as I had used S. S. S. and B. B. B. and P. P. P., five 
bottles of each, and received no relief, and I believed there was 
no cure for me. But I determined to give your remedy a fair 
trial, and I thank God I did. I determined to use heroic treat- 
ment, and not follow directions, so I began on your strongest 



preparation, No. 3, .and drank it freely as water, eight or nine 
times a day, using a jug, or gallon, every five or six days ; at the 
same time I used the remedy as a wash, bathing the ulcers night 
and morning, forcing the liquid into the sores with a sponge. I 
soon found the benefit of such treatment, for the ulcers at once 
ceased to come ; they began to discharge a healthy pus, my ap- 
petite returned, I slept well (as all soreness had gone from my 
body), the color came back to my face,-body, and hands, my flesh 
returned, until now I weigh one hundred and sixty pounds ; my 
family regained lost hopes, my friends congratulated me on 
my improved appearance, and I said good-by to disease. 

I have used seven gallons, and do not propose to quit until I 
am perfectly cured, although I believe I am now, yet I do not 
propose to give the microbes a chance to multiply yet awhile. I 
give you permission to show the photograph I enclose. It was 
taken when I commenced to use your remedy. If I had one of 
my present appearance it would show the gain which has been 
effected ; but it might mislead the unthinking, as although the 
sores are healed up the scars remain, and many of them I will 
carry to the grave. But to all and every one I truthfully say that 
I owe my cure and my life only and solely to the unstinted use 
of the Microbe Killer, and so long as I live I shall use no other 
medicine for the cure of any disease, for I firmly believe with Mr. 
Radam, that microbes are the cause of every disease, and I also 
believe his remedy is the only cure there is in the world. 

I have had the worst case of blood poisoning I ever saw, and I 
believe my case is the only one which has ever been cured. You 
can find a score of men who can vouch for the facts I have given. 
Nearly every one of them has seen my body in its worst condition, 
and all will testify that only Microbe Killer has cured me. 

Yours truly, 


709 Burgundy Street. 



PEOPLE are constantly deceiving themselves and often 
letting others deceive them- about their ailments, and they 
think they have organic disease when there is only some 
local weakness or derangement. 

The stomach is the source of very many troubles, of 
more than people generally have any idea of. Frequently a 
patient will come, asking to be thoroughly examined, be- 
cause confident of the existence of heart-disease. He has 
an irregular pulse, palpitation, pain over the region of the 
organ, and probably much nervous irritability. His chest 
is examined, but it is hard to convince him that his heart is 
perfectly healthy. He insists that he knows his own feel- 
ings best, and that they tell him differently, and he pre- 
fers to believe them. If the doctor says he is mistaken and 
tells him that the stomach is the source of trouble, he is 
probably dissatisfied and seeks another physician. Any 
doctor who is regardless enough of the truth to gratify him 
by telling him he is right, and that his heart is in such a 
terrible condition that death may come at any moment, 
will have his confidence. If such doctor treats him for 
heart-disease he will fail, but if he attacks the stomach the 
patient will get well and will give the doctor credit for hav- 
ing cured his heart, while the more honest man who told 
him the truth will be set down as a person ignorant of his 
profession. What people think is palpitation of the heart 
is in reality nothing more than a symptom of disorder of 



the stomach, which in this country is more prevalent than 
in any other. But why it should be so prevalent has nothing 
to do with the climate. It is a result of the way in which 
people live and of their disregard for the ordinary rules 
of diet and hygiene. Hot bread, iced water, insufficient 
exercise, fast eating, too common use of whiskey, are all 
conducive to indigestion. 

We read a great deal in political speeches in America 
of pauperism in Europe, although very few of the writers 
and speakers who use the word know what it means. But 
the people there, even the poor among them, live better 
than we do. They dine, they are not content to feed. 
They are more regular in their habits. Their food is more 
wholesome ; and so where a hundred persons are suffering 
from dyspepsia here, often in its worst form, there would 
scarcely be found one affected with it even mildly there ; 
and yet there is a great reluctance to attribute the evils of 
it to their true cause. Before I ever sold a gallon of 
microbe killer I experimented with it on myself, to see how 
it acted on an overloaded stomach. I took a hearty meal 
of meats and vegetables, including cucumbers and peas. 
Fermentation took place, gaseous matter was formed, and 
a sensation of swelling and bloating produced with severe 
pain. I drank one or two large glasses of the microbe 
killer, and all pain ceased in from five to ten minutes. This 
satisfied me that the superfluous fermentation was de- 
stroyed. Some kinds of food, especially some kinds of 
fruit and vegetables, ferment much more readily than 
others, and again, there is a difference in the degree of 
fermentation of different things. Overripe fruit ferments 
very readily, in fact it is already in a state of fermentation 
when eaten, and diarrhoea is the result, the microbes passing 
into the intestines. Unripe fruit is not readily digested. 
It is apt to remain in the stomach too long, and thus when 
fermentation ensues, colic, pain, and diarrhoea, again result. 

Persons suffering from indigestion have a weakened stom- 
ach. The lining membranes, where the trouble is of long 


standing, are broken down. There is no tone in them. 
They have been weakened by neglect of Nature's laws in 
the first instance, and their digestion being impaired over- 
fermentation has set in habitually, and thus no medicine 
can be of any use which does not check that by destroying 
the microbe that produces it. 

But that is not all. Impaired action of the stomach and 
digestive organs causes a mal-assimilation of the food, 
consequently an impairment of the blood, so that while the 
microbe killer will produce a prompt effect by direct action 
on the stomach and its contents, it must be persevered with 
to purify and strengthen the blood and restore the whole 
system to a healthy condition. When the disease is of long 
standing, as it always is, for dyspepsia begins before the 
patient knows what is the matter with him, time is also 
required to bring the membranes of that organ back to a 
proper form. Nourishment is also necessary to strengthen 
the blood, and this cannot be effected until the stomach is 
restored. It is evident, therefore, that when so much is 
required, time must be taken. Perseverance in the use of 
the remedy is essential, although, where that is used there 
need be no fear about the result. A cure is certain. 

It is useless to give artificial drugs like iron, and it would 
not be done but through mistaken ideas. It is useless to 
spread manure over a field of corn unless the weeds are re- 
moved ; for they will use up the fertilizer, and growing 
more luxuriantly than before they will choke out the crop ; 
in other words, so long as the microbe remains on the stom- 
ach it is useless to put in food or drugs, because the fer- 
mentation still goes on, probably even in an exaggerated 
form, thus leaving the patient in a worse condition than he 
was before and the system weaker. It is a false policy, 
resulting from ignorance, which gives iron to recover the 
coloring matter of the blood when a person looks pale and 
anaemic. Iron will not make blood. It cannot do it. First 
purify the stomach, then let the patient eat any thing that 
is nutritious and agreeable to the taste. The stomach then 


can digest it, the food is assimilated, and the entire body be- 
comes improved in tone. This is effecting a cure in Nature's 
own way, and it is not only preferable to artificial methods, 
but it is the only way in which a cure can be permanent 
and complete. 

Upon this principle, consumption if taken in time becomes 
curable. The microbe of the disease is very common. It 
was discovered in 1882 by Koch of Berlin. They are read- 
ily found in the bodies and in the sputa of persons suffering 
from phthisis, and when inoculated into other animals they 
reproduce tuberculosis. Consumption then is a contagious 
disease and may be conveyed from one person to another. 
It has not been popularly regarded so, but there is no doubt 
of the truth of it, the only difference between the contagion 
of phthisis and of such a disease as small-pox being in the less 
power of the microbes, except in larger quantities, to convey 
the disease. 

Laws existed in Italy as long ago as the last century in 
which pulmonary consumption was treated as contagious. 
Physicians were required to report every case that came 
under their notice, and a heavy penalty was imposed for 
neglecting to do so ; a second offense involved expatriation 
for a long term of years, so important was the precaution 
considered. Under the law isolation was practised. Poor 
persons suffering from consumption were removed to a hos- 
pital, and after the death of a patient in a private house, the 
bedding and clothes that had been used were destroyed, and 
after fumigation the house itself was made to undergo 
complete renovation. The law was not successful in abat- 
ing the disease, chiefly perhaps for the reason that persons 
suffer from it long before they are aware of it, certainly 
before it is necessary for them to lay aside their usual avo- 
cation, and hence the isolation comes too late. It is very 
doubtful whether the laws prevalent here which apply 
similarly to other diseases of an infectious or contagious 
character possess advantages sufficient to counterbalance the 
evils attending them. Too little regard is paid to the rights 


of individuals, and in consequence, coupled with the igno- 
rance and impulsive nature of our legislators, laws are placed 
upon the statute-book which look very well in theory but 
which are in reality inhuman and practically of no value. 

The isolation of consumptive patients would be a per- 
fectly gratuitous and useless cruelty. It could never be 
made effectual. If every one suffering from tubercle were 
to be taken away, the streets would be denuded of a large 
proportion of the population, and persons following an 
active business or professional life would become wards of 
the State, living apart from their fellow-men. There is no 
danger in the moist sputa, of phthisical patients. It is 
only when the sputa are allowed to dry that the microbes 
get into the air and become dangerous. The filthy habit of 
expectoration, peculiar to Americans, is thus a public evil, 
and to guard as far as possible against its consequences the 
mats and floors of street cars and the carpets, rugs, and 
floors of public halls and buildings cannot be too constantly 
or too carefully cleaned. In the same way there is danger in 
hotels. The same rooms are occupied by different people to 
a degree that possibly hundreds live for a time in the same 
apartments in the space of a year, and the cleansing that 
such places receive is wholly inadequate. Rooms occupied 
by transient visitors at hotels and boarding-houses would be 
more healthy if the floors were left uncarpeted, and if all 
curtains and hangings were excluded. 

One inference which the reader will deduce from these 
remarks is that consumptive patients take considerable risk, 
and involve others too in risk, when they go to summer 
resorts, and the inference would be correct. In such places 
due precautions are not taken. A person affected even 
mildly with tuberculosis occupying rooms at a summer 
resort which had been previously used by another similarly 
diseased would be very likely to intensify his trouble. The 
only suitable places for such persons are sanitaria, of which 
there are now plenty in the country, where proper precau- 
tions are taken and all risk is guarded against. 




Florida is proverbially dangerous to consumptive patients, 
but that is not due especially to this cause. Some hotels in 
that State are built suitably to the climate, and contain 
lofty and well ventilated rooms, which have at least the 
appearance of being adapted to sick persons. It is a well- 
known fact, nevertheless, that phthisical patients do not 
obtain relief from a visit to the " Land of Flowers." On the 
contrary, a fatal result is far more likely to be hastened by 
it. Persons suffering merely from throat affections may 
obtain relief, though not as they would in Bermuda, but 
tuberculosis is rendered worse. The extremely moist and 
warm as well as variable climate of Florida is particularly 
well adapted to the growth of the tubercle microbe, and if a 
consumptive patient retain strength to enable him to escape 
it, he will almost certainly suffer from its influence on re- 
turning north. Florida should be avoided by everybody 
who has a tendency or predisposition to tubercular disease. 

Not long ago the French Academy of Medicine appointed 
a commission to investigate the disease, and they formulated 
the cases most liable to contract it into three divisions : 

1st. Persons born of tuberculous parents or from persons 
belonging to families which include many members affected 
with tuberculosis. 

2d. Those who are weakened by privations and excesses ; 
the abuse of alcoholic drink is particularly injurious. 

3d. Persons suffering or convalescent from measles, 
whooping-cough, and small-pox are likewise predisposed to 
tuberculosis. Diabetic patients are especially predisposed. 

It was calculated by that commission that about twenty- 
five per cent, of the total number of deaths in Paris arise 
from some forms of disease where the tubercle microbe is 
found. It is a popular error to suppose that consumption 
is the only form in which it exhibits itself. Many diseases 
are due to it, not only scrofula, abscesses, ulcers, tumors, and 
diseases of the bones and joints, but others frequently 
regarded as inflammatory only, such as peritonitis, bronchi- 
tis, pleurisy, meningitis, enteritis, and catarrh. 


Any accurate estimate of the percentage of deaths in 
this country is impossible by reason of the great inaccuracy 
of the census. The stated population is greatly exagger- 
ated. This results partly from carelessness and partly from 
the clumsy way in which the returns are made. It is also 
done for political reasons. In the year of the last census, 
756,893 deaths were reported. We do not know how many 
were not reported. But of those, 91,270 were caused by 
consumption, while if we could learn accurately the number 
in which the microbe of tubercle alone was involved, the 
number would probably rise to nearly one half of the total. 

I have before me some returns only now completed which 
go to show that the deaths by consumption in New York 
are 3.5 per thousand of the population. In some wards of 
the city it is set as high as 9.71. It is more than probable 
that the truth lies nearer double these figures. The popu- 
lation of New York was given by the last census as 1,206,- 
299 and it is estimated now at 1,800,000. The first number 
is too high by probably two hundred thousand, and the 
estimate is in excess by probably from four to five hundred 
thousand. Apart from the constant effort to make the 
population appear higher than it is, a large number of 
persons get their names on the census who do business in 
the city but are residents outside of the limits, Staten 
Island or Long Island or in New Jersey. Consequently 
statistics are of very little value, and it is more than likely 
that if accurate figures could be obtained, it would show 
mortality rates to be not less than 26 to 30 per thousand, 
sometimes higher, of which about one half are influenced, 
if not directly caused, by tubercle diseases. The number of 
deaths recorded last year was 39,583. 

The prevalence of the tubercle microbe, the bacillus of 
Koch, is only what might be expected when we remember 
that it exists in meat, milk, and many articles of food, that 
it can reach us through the lungs and skin, and be trans- 
mitted readily from one person to another; then again, 
that it may remain in the system long before its effects are 


marked by any indication of disease. Knowing this, the 
necessity for adopting means to prevent its action becomes 
more imperative, as well as are the precautions requisite to 
prevent its being taken into the system. Physicians allow 
that their treatment of tubercle has of late years undergone 
a great change, arising entirely out of the discovery that it 
is a microbe disease. When they are forced to acknowl- 
edge, as they will be, that all are microbe diseases, their 
treatment will perhaps undergo still further change. 

A quaint acknowledgment has been made by Professor 
Sommerbrodt, which I shall notice more fully elsewhere. 
He has great faith in creasote as a curative agent, and 
especially as an antiseptic, and when the bacillus of tubercle 
was discovered he thought it would be an excellent medium 
for killing it. Using it tentatively he found that his con- 
sumptive patients derived some benefit from it. It hap- 
pened about that time Dr. Guttman was also experimenting 
and testing it on the cultured bacilli in his laboratory. 
These experiments led him to the calculation that before 
the microbes could be destroyed about one third of a drachm 
of the fluid must be introduced into the circulation, and he 
concluded that although the bacilli would be killed the 
patient would also assuredly perish from the poison. One 
drop of creasote is a dose. Notwithstanding this, Dr. 
Sommerbrodt persisted in his fancy, and has capsules made 
containing creasote for persons suffering from tubercular 
disease, content to take his chances whether the microbes 
or the patient die first. 

It is popularly supposed that tubercle is more common in 
towns than in the country. Careful observation shows this 
to be an error, and the explanation is not very clear. The 
tubercle microbe is not, like that of typhoid or diphtheria, 
dependent upon inefficient drainage or corrupt air, and 
possibly the large use of milk in the country may have 
something to do with it. But that is only a suggestion. 
Further investigations, however, are required. The statis- 
tics which led to the above conclusion were obtained from 


France and Germany. None, so far as I know, have been 
prepared in America, and if they had, they would for the 
reasons before specified hardly be trustworthy. 

Patt de foie gras, although esteemed a delicacy, is, as is 
well known, produced by disease, but it is not as well 
understood as it should be, that this liver is little else than a 
culture of tubercle germs. In this we have an instance 
therefore, not only where microbes become an article of 
food, but where they are largely esteemed and sold at a 
high price. Nevertheless the pate" de foie gras should be 

Tubercle bacilli are very frequent in poultry, and, again, 
dentists tell us that where persons are predisposed, they 
may produce serious results through decayed teeth. To 
lessen the danger the brush should be kept in requisition 
and used two or three times a day, and with it a safe anti- 
septic wash, which, like my microbe killer, destroys all 

In France it is not as usual as it is with us to use milk 
unboiled, yet in Paris there are about two thousand deaths 
of children every year, caused by tuberculous disease 
brought on by impure food. No meat or animal food of 
any kind may be eaten with perfect safety unless the inner 
portions are as well cooked as the exterior. Milk is, how- 
ever, always a large item in the nourishment of children, 
and Dr. Ernst, of Harvard, has shown that in a large num- 
ber of samples very many were found to contain tubercle 
bacilli in great quantities. Such milk is highly dangerous 
and should not be used until it shall have been allowed to 
boil for at least ten minutes. 

Milk already sterilized may be purchased, and if prepared 
by a substantial manufacturer, it is generally all that one 
could wish. In the works of a well-known maker in this 
city the following is the nature of the process, and the 
utmost care is used to insure its success : The milk is taken 
into a pan capable of holding a thousand gallons. Then it 
is mixed with a fresh extract of the pancreatic fluid at a 


temperature of 105 Fahrenheit. It is then drawn into a 
vacuum-pan at a low temperature and gradually raised to a 
high one, the milk being partially concentrated at the same 
time. Milk sugar is now added and the evaporation is con- 
tinued until the contents of the pan are nearly dry. They 
are then taken into a room where presence of all germs has 
been removed by filtering the air contained in it through a 
thick bulk of cotton-wool. It is there ground, bottled, and 
packed in hermetically sealed cans, which have in their turn 
been also sterilized and purified from all microbes. Nothing 
short of a process of this kind, conducted with the utmost 
caution, will suffice to render milk absolutely free from dis- 
ease germs, unless it be a long process of boiling immediately 
before being used. 

The bacillus being conveyed from the sputa of diseased 
persons, the habit of expectorating in public places cannot 
be too strongly condemned, and care should always be 
taken to empty spittoons so that their contents shall be 
thoroughly destroyed. If thrown upon the soil the disease- 
germ may be conveyed to chickens or domestic animals, 
and so be returned to the human family. Young children, 
and anybody with any predisposition to tuberculous disease, 
should never sleep in rooms with persons suffering from it, 
and thorough disinfection, with high-pressure steam if possi- 
ble, should be carefully followed. In buildings such as 
hotels and boarding-houses, attention should be given to 
this, and rooms should be furnished with it in view. The 
practice of using fixed carpets and much upholstery is bad. 
Tuberculous people may have occupied apartments for 
weeks or months. They leave and others occupy their 
rooms and at once incur all the risk of infection. In such 
places, floors should be painted or stained and rugs or "art 
squares " used for carpets. Curtains, lambrequins, and such 
like things should be dispensed with. If the floor must be 
covered, linoleum or oil cloth are the best materials to use, 
and the former is the warmer. Rugs may be used over 
either. Railroad sleeping-cars are among the most likely 


places to incur infection ; no sufficient care is taken to pre- 
vent it, and it is more than likely that many persons have 
suffered in consequence. The method of cleansing and 
airing the sleeping berths on railroads is most imperfect and 
reprehensible. A show of diligence in this direction is of 
necessity made when the berths are closed for the day, but 
it is only a show. Strictly each berth should be thoroughly 
ventilated, and every precaution should be used about it so 
that no microbe or disease-germ can possibly be left behind. 
This has probably never yet been done. 

Physicians have looked in all directions except the right 
for a cure for consumption, and among them is one that has 
been followed, especially in France and Germany, of inhal- 
ing hot air. This is based on the fact that heat kills the 
microbe, but it has been found in practice that the air must 
be of a temperature of about three hundred degrees, or 
eighty-eight degrees hotter than boiling water, and even 
then it is not to be depended on. I have prepared a list of 
some at least of the remedies that have from time to time 
been proposed for consumption and tubercular diseases, all 
produced, as even the doctors now admit, by that little 
microbe discovered by Koch. That list, which is too long 
for full quotation, comprises alcohol, quinine, salicylic 
acid, antipyrine, arsenic, pilocarpine, morphia and opium 
and their compounds, oxygen, corrosive sublimate, iron, 
digitalis, atropine, chloral, iodine, glycerine, the hypo- 
phosphites, potassium iodide, cod-liver oil, chloroform, 
benzoin, cocaine, bromides, picrotoxin, terpin hydrate, 
creasote, agaricin, iodoform, phosphorus, sclerotic acid, 
etc., etc. From the number and varied character of these 
alleged remedies, the majority of which are powerful poisons, 
it may be judged that medical science has not been very 
successful in finding the means of treating tuberculous 
diseases ; and the popular belief that consumption is among 
the most fatal and incurable has been justified. Neverthe- 
less experience now tells us that, as I have said above, it 
may be cured if treated in time and upon proper principles. 







When lungs are already destroyed it is too late to hope for 
their restoration, although even then relief may be afforded. 
But in the earlier stages of the disease, now that the cause 
is known, it is certainly possible to remove every trace of 
the trouble and to bring back the patient to a state of sound 
health. My discovery has done this and will do it again if 
taken properly and persevered with. Inhalation is in such 
cases very valuable. 

Gradually physicians are recognizing the truth that more 
and more diseases must be attributed to the presence of 
microbes, and as they do so their mode of treatment will 
become simplified. But even then their ordinary Materia 
Medica will not suffice, and they will be forced to the adop- 
tion of my medicine, which alone of all others may be taken 
in sufficient quantity to destroy microbes without injury to 
the patient. A French physician has quite recently shown 
that baldness is to be attributed to the presence of a microbe 
which he has detected and named, and which, he says, 
attacks the follicles and destroys the hair at the roots. By 
degrees, perhaps, medical science will accept my teaching, 
and admit that all diseases are due to the same cause ; and 
meanwhile, what must strike every reasoning man is the 
fact that, even where the doctors admit that microbes are 
the exciting cause, they nevertheless look about for differ- 
ent means by which to get rid of them ; whereas my expe- 
rience has shown beyond question that one agent is quite 
capable of destroying all forms of disease germs, some only 
requiring a longer time than others. 

Every thing in this world operates by laws which nature 
herself lays down, as any one can see who will take the 
trouble to look into it. But people are apt to believe what 
they are told without exercising their own judgment and 
reason. Just as when I was a boy, I accepted every thing 
which I heard or read without questioning its truth, and it 
was not till I grew older, and exercising common-sense, I 
began to inquire for myself that I realized how much of 
error there was in every-day teachings. Now I have come 



to wonder how people are so misled, and how hard it is to 
make them see through the simplest things, although medi- 
cal science is ever doing its best to keep them in ignorance. 
The truth is, that too many people like to let other people 
do their thinking. They are too indolent or too indifferent 
to do it for themselves. Again, to many the idea never 
occurs. They take whatever is offered to them without 
asking the whys and the wherefores, or even suggesting 
whether the thing is as represented, much as a child sees 
the sun rise and set, and night follow day, without ever 
asking itself the cause. Perhaps when we remember how 
much people are engrossed .with their own business affairs 
we may find some excuse for them when they receive every 
thing with too much faith ; the wonder rather is that they 
are so reluctant to accept the truth when it is put under 
their eyes. 

The public likes to be humbugged. The various medical 
companies and agencies that live by advertising and offering 
certain cures depend entirely on the gullibility of the peo- 
ple, and money in large amounts testifies to the extent to 
which that weakness prevails. There are many instances 
where in the country farmers and business men have bor- 
rowed money and crippled themselves financially to procure 
a worthless nostrum, to which they were led by some shrewd 

This city of New York abounds with men who live entirely, 
and live well, on the money they squeeze out of the pockets 
of individuals who are silly enough to trust them. These 
victims are ready enough to believe promises if they are 
well worded, even if, by the exercise of a little common- 
sense, they might know them to be deceptive ; but put 
actual facts before those same persons, and they are too 
obtuse to understand. 

It must be the perversity of human nature ; hence know- 
ing this, I am the more anxious to prove all my assertions, 
to take the reader fully into my confidence, and to explain 
every thing so that the most unwilling comprehension can- 


not fail to understand, and the most skeptical must believe. 
People who have been deceived by the doctors, and who 
have found out the inutility and worthlessness of medicine, 
are naturally the most difficult to convince. I do not blame 
them. I have been through that same school myself. I 
ascertained to my cost how useless it is to trust to the doc- 
tors or to any modern system of medicine, and when one 
has tried every remedy and had them all fail, one very nat- 
urally looks with a little suspicion upon another new one 
that may come to light. 

A few years ago I was one of the most faithful followers 
of the doctors. I took any thing and every thing they 
offered me. I saw nothing outside of medical science, and 
swallowed every thing there was within it. But my experi- 
ence satisfied and destroyed all my faith. I no longer had con- 
fidence when I discovered that every thing deceived me, and 
I cannot find fault with others who are in the same position. 
Charlatans and quacks understand this proneness of people 
to put confidence in the profession, so when they want to 
sell medicines they call them blood purifiers, or specifics for 
nervous debility or for special diseases. They seldom pro- 
fess to cure every thing, and by thus abstaining they pay a 
tribute to medical ethics. I have often been told by physi- 
cians that I make a mistake when I undertake to cure every 
thing and to abolish or remove all diseases. That word all 
overcomes them. They would not so much mind my curing 
a few, because then they could have the balance for them- 
selves. But if I cure all, why there is, of course, no field left 
for them to work in. But I cannot limit my sphere of 
usefulness. Nature showed me that there is but one cause 
of disease, and the cures I made endorsed that teaching. 
Why, then, should I withhold the truth and deceive the 
public by denying my own knowledge? 

I have often heard it said, by very smart persons too, that 
they cannot believe in a medicine that cures all, so such people 
must still accept the doctrine that the causes of disease are 
very many, as many, probably, as the divisions into which the 


doctors themselves classify human ailments. It is strange, 
when we contemplate the enormous strides that the world 
has made of late years in every branch of industry and in 
every other section of knowledge, to see how little progress 
has been made in medical science. It still lags as far behind 
as it was a hundred years ago. I do not refer to chemistry 
and to mechanical preparations, but to the practice of medi- 
cine and surgery. Physicians are multiplied enormously. 
There are medical institutes, medical schools and colleges, 
medical books, in vastly increased numbers, and there are 
also larger graveyards and more of them. What improve- 
ments have the doctors made in the cure of disease ? None. 
What advance has medical science made ? None whatever. 
If a physician can cure catarrh, cancer, consumption, he can 
cure all diseases, because they are only a few of the results 
of disease germs. Those, therefore, who promise to cure 
those might as well undertake to cure every thing. But the 
truth is, that medical science never has succeeded in destroy- 
ing micro-organisms. It has never killed microbes. If the 
doctors can do so, why do they not come forward, not with 
promises, but with proof that they have done it ? No, they 
cannot do it, and they still number them among the incura- 
ble diseases. This book should open the eyes of the people 
to the fact. It should let them see the true state of things, 
how they have been kept in ignorance first, and then how 
that ignorance has been imposed upon, and how they have 
been misled and deceived. They will, however, soon see 
things in a new light. The cause of disease is so simple. It 
is nothing more than a fulfilment of the law under which 
small bodies feed on and destroy larger ones. They are 
visible to us, and they cannot therefore be doubted. 

I explained in a previous chapter the nature of the ordi- 
nary lichen, which consists of two parts, one of which is a 
parasite, and that is only an example of a system prevalent 
in nature. People who are ready to deny this, which, if they 
choose, they can see for themselves, are quite willing to accept 
the doctrine of a personal devil, although they cannot see him 


and have no proof whatever of his existence. There is no 
disputing that the masses of the people are ignorant of these 
subjects. They do not give them sufficient thought, and I 
am glad to have the opportunity to enlighten them. But 
there is no excuse for the medical profession. They have 
every opportunity to learn the truth. They devote them- 
selves to the subject of disease and still they remain in 
ignorance, and when a patient dies under their hands the 
law protects them, and they care nothing so long as they 
receive their fees. 



THERE are two popular errors on the subject of leprosy. 
Many people suppose that "it is not contagious ; and still 
more think that it is uncommon, or at any rate, that it is 
confined to certain parts of the world. Both ideas are erro- 
neous, but for the first there is ample excuse. About 
thirty years ago the disease assumed a virulent form in 
Demerara, a settlement in British Guiana. The London 
Colonial Office submitted the matter to the Royal College 
of Physicians, and through that body sent a series of ques- 
tions to various portions of the empire. A committee 
chosen by the college examined and collated the informa- 
tion thus obtained, and drew up a report, which was pub- 
lished in 1867, in which they announced that a consensus of 
opinion throughout the world was opposed to the belief that 
leprosy was contagious or communicable by proximity or 
contact with a diseased person. They also said that leprosy 
is rarely transmissible in married life where one of the 
parties has no tendency to the disease. This report was 
accepted as conclusive, and measures previously in vogue on 
the supposition that the disease was contagious were aban- 
doned, and as a result, the mortality from it has been greatly 
increased. " It may," says an English physician, " without 
much exaggeration, be said that if leprosy slew its thousands 
before, it has slain its tens of thousands within the confines 
of the British Empire since 1867. Even outside the limits 
of Her Majesty's sway the evil effect has been felt, for the 



authority of an institution which was supposed to be the 
concrete embodiment of medical science, necessarily had 
great weight in the minds of foreign practitioners." That 
that unfortunate " Report on Leprosy " did not do still more 
harm is only due to the fact that the dangerous doctrine 
which it was intended to enforce was not universally acted 
upon ; the practical common-sense of mankind in many 
places where leprosy has its home refusing to be led astray 
by theoretical opinion. The doctrine laid down in the 
report was the reverse of truth, and the fact soon became 
realized when it was seen how rapidly the disease increased 
when the old restrictions were withdrawn. It is evident 
that the persons upon whom the committee had relied for 
information, were either incompetent or untrustworthy, and 
it would have been better if a commission had gone out and 
sought facts for themselves, when they would certainly have 
found ample evidence of the transmissibility of the disease. 
Doubts may have been due to the circumstance that 
leprosy takes its own time to develop, as was made evident 
in the case I have referred to at page 34, but that ought not 
to have led a body like the College of Physicians into so 
serious a blunder. Frere fitienne in a little work entitled 
" La L6pre est Contagieuse " mentions an instance of a lady 
in Venezuela whose husband died of leprosy. She was at the 
time in perfect health, but five years afterwards was a well 
confirmed leper. Another case is given where a man be- 
came leprous by frequently visiting the hospital, and whose 
wife remained for ten years without showing any sign of the 
disease, to which, however, she ultimately fell a victim. Dr. 
Goddard, a young French physician, and a stern believer in 
the non-contagious nature of leprosy, went to Palestine and 
took up his residence in one of the lazar-houses that are not 
infrequent in that country. For a time he felt that his 
experiment had proved the accuracy of his opinion, but he 
took the disease and ultimately died of it. There is also 
abundant evidence obtainable that persons whose duty it is 
to attend upon the sick are frequently attacked. It would 


appear from the partial statistics that have thus far been 
obtained, that the proportion amounts to about fifty per 
cent., certainly not less and probably very much more. Of 
the contagious character of the disease then there is no 
longer any room for doubt. It is transmissible and insidi- 
ous, the victim not knowing when he is first smitten. 

Leprosy is also a common disease. A writer in the New 
York Saturday Review of February 22d, reports having seen 
a woman seriously affected with it riding in a Broadway car, 
and it is well known that there are several cases in this city 
about which no precautions are taken. In the Appendix 
will be found an abstract of a discussion in the New York 
Academy of Medicine on this subject, which is well 
deserving attention. Sir Morell Mackenzie has also accu- 
mulated some valuable data. He points out how it has 
been carried into California by the Chinese, into some of the 
Northwestern States by Norwegians, and into Salt Lake 
City by Mormon converts from Honolulu. " In Louisiana, 
where last century leprosy prevailed so extensively that a 
hospital for it was founded in 1785, it again showed itself in 
1866, in a woman whose father was a native of the south of 
France. From this fresh centre the disease has spread to 
such an extent, that Dr. Blane recently reported forty- two 
cases in New Orleans alone." It broke out in South Caro- 
lina in 1847, and between that and 1882 sixteen cases were 
reported, the first victims being Jews whose families had 
immigrated early in the century. There were also some 
native Americans and one Irishman. 

Norway is the most considerable leprosy centre of Eu- 
rope, but the disease there is limited to certain regions, 
especially the districts round Bergen, Molde, and Trond- 
jeim. It was prevalent in Sweden at the beginning of the 
century, but has nearly died out there now. Spain is an- 
other of its strongholds. Dr. Roman Viscarro says : " From 
time immemorial lepers have swarmed in Spain, especially 
in the provinces of Asturias, Tarragona, Valencia, and Cas- 
tellon. Dr. John Webster visited that country to study the 
disease about a quarter of a century ago, when it was said 


to be spreading. He found fifty-three cases in the hospital 
at Granada, and he heard of 284 more outside. In 1880 Sir 
Morell Mackenzie found thirty-nine sufferers in the San 
Lazaro hospital at Seville, and he learned that as many as 
twenty-one had been admitted in one year. But these fig- 
ures give no adequate idea of the truth, for in addition to 
the sufferers who enter the hospitals there are many more 
who remain at home with their families, some maintained 
by them, others dependent on public charity, and probably 
only those seek shelter in a hospital who are destitute of all 
resource. Leprosy is especially prevalent in the district of 
La Marina, which takes in the seaboard of the two provinces 
of Valencia and Alicante. 

Portugal stands next to Norway in the number of its 
lepers. In Italy the disease prevails on the Genoese Riviera, 
and at Commachio, and it is rapidly spreading in Sicily. It 
is very prevalent in Crete, and cases are to be found in other 
islands of the Eastern Mediterranean, as well as in Greece 
and Hungary. Occasionally it is met with as far north as 
St. Petersburg. 

In Nice and Savoy it is not uncommon, and Dr. Besnier, 
of the French Hopital St. Louis, says that since France 
had extended her colonial possessions French soldiers, sail- 
ors, traders, and missionaries have fallen victims to leprosy 
in large numbers. The disease is certainly spreading in 
France, but that statement of Dr. Besnier is remarkable in 
view of the fact that while the British Empire extends over 
a fifth of the globe, there is no leprosy in Great Britain 
unless an isolated case be occasionally imported. 

It is increasing rapidly in the West Indies. In 1805 there 
were three cases in Trinidad. In 1815 this number had 
increased to seventy-seven. In 1878 this again had grown 
to eight hundred and sixty, so that in that small community 
the disease had extended four times more rapidly than the 
population. It was the alarming increase of the victims in 
Barbadoes that led to the report of the Royal College of 
Physicians that I have referred to. 

When the English began the colonization of New Zealand 


in 1839 a peculiar form of leprosy was discovered there, and 
it has since been met with in other parts of the Pacific. In 
precolonial days the natives killed lepers, and care was taken 
never to eat the flesh of one. The disease is most common 
in a zone of about twenty-five miles around Lake Taupo, 
but it has never affected the white settlers unless they live 
among the Maories or intermarry with them. It is, how- 
ever, steadily on the increase within the district where it 

The supposed number of lepers in India is 250,000, 
though only 135,000 are on record. There, too, the number 
is increasing, as it also is in Canada, but only among the 
French population of the province of Quebec and in New 
Brunswick. The most remarkable development of the dis- 
ease in recent times is in the Sandwich Islands. Until 1853 
it was unknown there. In that year one case was noted 
in Oahu, a thinly populated place about twenty miles from 
Honolulu. In 1859, when it was first officially recognized, 
there were less than ten marked cases, but the number rap- 
idly increased, so that in five or six years it had become 
quite a common occurrence for lepers to apply for relief at 
the public dispensary. An official return in 1865 gave 230 
patients. In 1866 the segregation settlement at Molokai was 
opened, and since then more than three thousand cases have 
been received there. In 1888 there were 749 at the settle- 
ment, but Dr. Prince A. Morrow, of this city, who has vis- 
ited the place recently, and given much attention to the 
disease, puts the present number at 1,100. 

The origin of leprosy is unknown. The Maories attribute 
it to the use of fish from Lake Taupo as an article of food, 
and the disappearance of the disease in England has been 
put to the credit of improved agriculture and an abundant 
supply of fresh food and vegetables. There has been a fre- 
quent tendency to the belief that a constant fish diet has 
something to do with it, but it cannot be sustained. Neither 
climate, soil, nor race has any thing to do with it, nor is 
there any force in the theories that it depends on a defi- 


ciency of salt in the food or of potash in the blood. We 
know that it may be derived by heredity and by contagion, 
but there our certain knowledge ends. If, however, the 
origin be obscure, the cause is better defined. Even physi- 
cians are beginning to look upon it as a microbe disease, as 
it certainly is in common with all other human ailments. 
There is nothing exceptional in leprosy. Dr. Danielsen, of 
Norway, has studied the disease throughout a long life 
among his countrymen, and he believes that much of the 
prevalence is due to heredity. His son-in-law, Dr. Hansen, 
took up the inquiry at the point to which Danielsen had 
brought it, and he was the first to discover the peculiar 
microbe of the disease, which he designated bacillus leprce, 
and which at once settles the question of contagion, if it had 
not been settled before. But where this microbe originates 
is not yet ascertained. We cannot trace it as we can, for 
example, the microbe of tetanus in Cuba. It has been sug- 
gested that possibly it may ultimately be found in fish, 
but that is merely an idea arising out of the other theory, 
that a fish diet is a predisposing cause of leprosy. Certain 
it is that the disease has always been most prevalent in 
times of want or when the vitality of the people has been 
lowered by poor or insufficient food. The overcrowded 
tenement-houses of New York are especially adapted to the 
spread of leprosy, possibly to its origin, and it is a disease 
which, when once recognized, should come under the atten- 
tion of the government. Sanitary arrangements, segrega- 
tion, and an abundance of wholesome and nutritious food 
for the patients are essential elements of success in its treat- 
ment and of its prevention. 

Dr. Arning, who undertook the inoculation of the prisoner 
in Hawaii, and who watched the case, has defined his opin- 
ions upon the disease. He says : 

ist. That the bacillus of leprosy is limited to the human 

2d. That it must be transmitted either directly from in- 
dividual to individual, or, 


3d. Through a stage of poor condition which we are at 
present unable to detect, but which may be present in the 
soil, water, or food, but can only get into them from the 
diseased tissues of a leper. 

4th. Accepting either theory the direct or indirect trans- 
mission, we must look upon every individual leper, whether 
in the incipient or advanced state of the disease, as a dan- 
gerous focus of the malady, he multiplying and nursing the 
germ in his tissues. 

5th. As every seed requires its conditions of soil, atmos- 
phere, etc., to allow it to strike, and when struck to grow up 
and be itself a seed-bearing plant, so does the leprous mi- 
crobe require a certain disposition of the human soil to 
strike and thrive. What this peculiar disposition may be we 
are at present unable to define. It is evidently a condition 
which may coexist with apparent good health, as many 
examples of strong, robust men developing leprosy show us. 
This disposition may be transmitted by heredity. 

The only part of this statement to which exception may 
be taken is the first. It is not certain, only probable, that 
the leprous microbe is peculiar to mankind. Further inves- 
tigation may prove that, if time be given it, it might, by 
inoculation, produce a similar disease in other animals, but 
three or four years would be necessary. This is, however, 
of small consequence compared with the fact that, even 
though the medical profession admits that leprosy is 
caused by a microbe, no successful means of combating 
the disease has been applied by it, and it has remained 
for the microbe killer to produce any thing like satisfactory 

The case that I am about to mention presents, however, 
some conditions that were an extremely unfavorable test of 
the remedy. The disease had been long developed, the 
patient was very much reduced, and his circumstances have 
been such that he has not been able to obtain proper nour- 
ishment, but, on the contrary, his system has been through- 
out ill nourished and reduced, simply for the reason that he 


has not been able to provide himself with necessaries. 
Nevertheless, the results are highly encouraging and satis- 

It was some time in July, 1889, that I went to New 
Orleans to see the patient whom my company then had 
mentioned to me. They were anxious to test the effect of 
my discovery in leprosy, and the occasion was the first that 
had offered itself. We had tried before, but every case we 
met with was under medical treatment, and the physician in 
charge would not allow us an opportunity to test the medi- 
cine. They have even attempted to dissuade the man who 
is now under our care from continuing with us, although he 
has derived so much benefit. This man's name is James 
Kavanaugh. He was a member, as I am informed, of a fire 
company at Algiers. When I first saw him he had been 
using the microbe killer for five weeks, and he assured me 
that he already experienced considerable relief. His condi- 
tion, however, was most pitiful. I had never seen any thing 
like it. Persons interested in the company turned from the 
sight, sickened by what they saw. I remained with him for 
half an hour, making a thorough examination. He was 
living in a poorly furnished cabin, amid conditions that held 
out but little hope of success. The place was not attended 
to. Sanitary requirements were neglected. Foul matter 
was to be found on the bed and surroundings, and the more 
I studied the prospect the more convinced I became that 
the disease had advanced too far to justify me in looking for 
a cure. His tongue was swelled so that he had difficulty in 
closing his mouth ; his eyebrows and toe-nails had dropped 
off ; the skin might be peeled off in large flakes from various 
parts of the body ; his eyes appeared as though about to 
fall from their sockets ; swellings were in every limb, and his 
ears were enlarged to twice the size that they would have 
been in health. 

I held him out very little encouragement, for the advanced 
stage to which the disease had arrived, and the inability of 
the man to obtain nourishing food and plenty of it, caused 


me much misgiving. He was willing, however to put him- 
self in our hands, all other treatment having failed, and I 
undertook to do what I could. I told him that the microbe 
killer must be used very freely, both externally and in- 
ternally, every place where fermentation had developed 
being kept continually moist with it. He accordingly in- 
creased the amount, and exclusive of external applications 
he drank eight wineglassfuls of the strongest form (No. 3) 
daily. The effect of this was to stop all evidences of fer- 
mentation in about three months, and his father reported 
to me such a marked improvement that I was anxious to 
see him again. I made an examination of his blood and 
found that all microbe life in that had diminished, and 
hence I became convinced that at last a cure for leprosy 
had been discovered, if only it can be properly applied. If 
this man had had to purchase the remedy he would never 
have been cured, for he had not the means, but this diffi- 
culty could of course be overcome if it were used in 
dispensaries and public hospitals. 

As he continued to steadily improve I visited Algiers 
again, this time taking with me Mr. Lilienthal, a photogra- 
pher of New Orleans, and then I obtained the photograph 
which was the original of the illustration. The engraving 
is not as effective as the photograph, and that hardly con- 
veyed a complete idea of the man's appearance. Mr. 
Lilienthal was at first very reluctant to come with me into 
the presence of a leper, but consented on being told that 
there was no danger, and that I would handle the man 
myself. He is always ready to testify as to these facts. 
The patient was photographed in his kitchen, and, as we 
thought, every thing was kept very private. But soon it 
leaked out. Newspaper reporters were sent to investigate, 
and they had personal interviews with Kavanaugh, the 
result of which was the appearance of an article in the New 
Orleans Picayune which is sufficiently interesting, apart from 
its value as an endorsement of the microbe killer, to justify 
my quotation here in full. It read as follows : 


James Kavanaugh, Algiers, I_a. From photograph by Lilienthal, 
137 Canal Street, New Orleans. 







All medical authorities agree that leprosy is one of the most 
dreaded of all the ills humanity is heir to. A well-known writer 
on the subject, in making general observations, says that by the 
term leprosy a disease of the cutis only was originally meant, 
terminating sometimes, perhaps, unfavorably in unhealthy sores 
or spreading, sloughy ulcerations, marasmus, and decay of mental 
and bodily strength ; but in many, the majority of cases, where 
cleanliness may have been attended to, in slow and gradual return 
to health. Medical authorities are not agreed as to whether or 
not the disease is contagious, but the civil authorities of all 
countries where the disease has been found have shown alarm 
and endeavored to isolate the subjects. 

According to Wilson, lepra is described as a non-contagious 
and chronic inflammation of the derma, consisting in the eruption 
on various parts of the body of raised and circular patches which 
are speedily covered by thin, semi-transparent scales of white and 
morbid epiderma. The patches are prominent around their 
circumference and somewhat depressed in the centre ; they 
increase by the extension of their periphery, while the central 
area gradually returns to the natural state. During the progress 
of the patches the scales are often thrown off and replaced by 
successive formations. The local disorder is unaccompanied by 
constitutional symptoms ; it is most strongly marked in the 
neighborhood of the knee and elbow joints, where it frequently 
forms patches of large size and endures for a considerable length 
of time, sometimes recurring at particular periods for several 
years and lasting for several months. The varieties of lepra, 
with the exception of the syphilitic form, are mere modifications 
of the same disease, dependent on trivial circumstances. This 


author treats of four varieties lepra vulgaris, lepra alphoides, 
lepra nigricans, lepra syphilitica. 

These remarks are prompted by the discovery of a genuine, 
well-developed case of leprosy located in a little isolated house at 
the corner of Chestnut and Eliza streets, Algiers, across the river 
from New Orleans. The leper is a young man named James 
Kavanaugh, aged twenty-nine years. 

He was visited yesterday by a representative of the Picayune, 
and quite an interesting chat was held with him regarding his 
most unfortunate condition. Inquiry among physicians and 
citizens of Algiers and the man's general appearance settled the 
fact beyond dispute that he is, or was until recently, in the last 
stages of the loathsome and hideous disease. It is also current 
rumor that there are other cases of leprosy in and about Algiers ; 
in fact the people do not seem to feel any alarm, and talk about 
the disease with as much indifference as if it were a bad cold 
under discussion. 

Kavanaugh was born and raised in Algiers, and was for eleven 
years employed as a teamster by the Morgan Railroad Company. 
He was quite popular among his associates about the railroad 
shops and in the town generally. He was an active and popular 
member of Morgan Steam Fire Company No. 3, and is practically 
under the care of the firemen at present. 

The disease began to show itself about four years ago in small 
brown spots on the chest and neck. He called in a prominent 
and well-known physician on this side of the river, and after a 
thorough diagnosis of the case it was pronounced leprosy and 
incurable. Fearing contagion the members of the fire company 
built the little red-painted house above mentioned, and young 
Kavanaugh was placed there as a doomed man. His father and 
sister moved into the house with him, and additional rooms were 
provided for their occupancy. In a short time the disease began 
to spread until his entire body was covered with brown spots ; 
his tongue was swollen and cracked until he could not articulate 
distinctly ; nasal passages clogged ; his eyebrows and lashes fell 
off ; toe-nails rotted off, and his entire body was fast becoming a 
mass of putrefaction. 

A purse of $500 was made up by the firemen, and offered to 
any one who would cure him. One or two doctors called on him, 
but he got no relief, and was finally given up to die. 




About three months ago Kavanaugh began taking a preparation 
called Radam's Microbe Killer, extensively advertised as a de- 
stroyer of microbes, which infest animal and vegetable life, and 
strange to say he is not only very much improved, but, according 
to his own statement made to the Picayune reporter yesterday, be- 
lieves firmly that the remedy will finally cure him. 

Kavanaugh states that he takes the remedy eight times a day 
and keeps saturated rags on his body, and in consequence the 
swelling in his ears has gone down, the ulcers on his feet are 
healing, and that he has certainly experienced more relief from 
the use of this remedy than anything else he has tried. Is it pos- 
sible that here is actually a cure for leprosy ? If so, and appear- 
ances would seem to prove it, patent medicine though it be, it 
should be accorded due merit. When seen yesterday the leper 
was walking about the yard surrounding his house and smoking 
a cigar. He spoke distinctly and seemed cheerful and lively. 

Asked how he thought he contracted the disease whether by 
inheritance or by contagion, he said his father and sister lived in 
the same yard with him and were perfectly healthy ; that his pro- 
genitors were all a hardy, healthy people, and that he believed he 
had caught the disease from a young man who worked in the 
Morgan shops several years ago and died from supposed leprosy. 

At the present time a fair estimate puts the number of lepers 
in the United States as not less than three hundred. Of course, 
there is no means of determining just how many cases America is 
harboring, and very likely the number given is much too small. 

Dr. Morrow, who has studied the subject closely, holds, accord- 
ing to the Medical News, that there exists a decided danger of 
the spread of leprosy in America. He thinks that the disease in 
its present state here might be compared to a conflagration, which 
could easily be extinguished at first, but which, left to itself until 
it had gained a certain headway, could not be subdued until after 
the material it had to feed upon had become exhausted. In the 
Sandwich Islands in 1848 there were but few cases of leprosy, and 
for twenty years the government paid no attention to the disease. 
By that time there were about two hundred and fifty cases, and 
the authorities, becoming alarmed, took stringent measures for its 
repression. A system of segregation was adopted, but, unfortu- 
nately, the danger was appreciated too late. Dr. Morrow says 
he does not believe that a calamity such as has overtaken the 


Hawaiians is in store for this country ; but, at the same time, he 
thinks there is a sufficiency of leprosy seed here to stock this or 
any other country. 

Cases of leprosy have developed in New Orleans before, and 
the leper settlement on Bayou La Fourche is too uncomfortably 
close to repel all fear of a spread of the disease, when the increase 
on the Sandwich Islands is contemplated. 

On July 2 1st the following appeared in the same paper : 



Further investigation of the case of the young man, James 
Kavanaugh, in Algiers, who is now suffering from tubercular 
leprosy, and is attracting considerable attention, discloses the 
fact that his companion and associate, a few years ago, was a 
man named Mallager, who resided in the Third district, near the 
Mint. This man was afflicted with the loathsome disease, and 
Kavanaugh was constantly in his company, at times ate with him 
and drank out of the same vessel that he did, and it is evident 
that he contracted the disease by so doing. 

Some time ago two alleged Mexican physicians called to see the 
leper and agreed to cure him. Physicians in Algiers and in the 
city agreed, if they did, to give them thousands of dollars to 
know the cure. The Mexicans set to work and closeted Kava- 
naugh in a close room and put him through the sweating process. 
Before doing this, however, they covered his hair with a piece of 
mosquito bar tightly drawn around the forehead, and tattooed his 
face and entire body with mercurial ointment, giving him the ap- 
pearance of an Indian. They worked on the man in this manner 
for three weeks with but little or any relief, and then discovered 
that they would have to return to Mexico for certain remedies. 
The gentleman having charge of the fund raised by the citizens 
to pay for curing the man gave them $100 for their trouble, and 
they left and have not yet returned. 

A prominent physician of Algiers was visited by a reporter of 
the Picayune and questioned in regard to the above case, and he 


remarked that he had under his observation several suspicious 
cases. He knew of a case of a mother and son, residing near 
Morgan No. 3*5 engine-house, who were pronounced lepers. The 
daughter, who is a married woman residing in one of our par- 
ishes, has all the appearances of having become attacked by the 

The physician stated that he was now attending to an aged 
negress who was suffering from tubercular leprosy. The nails 
on her toes had rotted off and he had amputated the toes. The 
disease began eating the foot, and on last Friday he amputated 
the foot at the instep. There is also a case in Gretna, the suf- 
ferer being a baker. Some time ago this baker's brother died 
from the disease. This physician desires that the Board of 
Health send a corps of experts to Algiers to inquire into the 
suspicious cases. 

Two days afterward the Picayune printed the following 
letters from the patient and his father, who both felt that it 
was but right to make known over their own signatures the 
effect of my treatment on a disease that had hitherto baffled 
the highest medical skill : 

NEW ORLEANS, LA., July 23, 1889, 
Fifth District. 

I positively assert that my son was afflicted with that most 
loathsome and hideous disease, LEPROSY, and of a character 
most malignant. Any person who may doubt, or be skeptical re- 
garding this case, is most cordially invited to call and see him 
now, or at any early date, at my residence, No. 157 Eliza Street, 
Algiers, Fifth District ; because if not seen soon, and he continues 
to improve as he has since beginning the use of William Radam's 
Microbe Killer, they will not have an opportunity of giving an 
honest verdict concerning his case. 



I, the undersigned, do hereby declare that I have been afflicted 
with " Leprosy " for over four years ; my sickness has been pro- 
nounced " Leprosy " by the leading physicians and the public 


generally, and I was entirely abandoned and left alone to die ; but 
thanks to Mr. Wm. Radam, whose medicine, or Microbe Killer, I 
have been using for five weeks with the most beneficial results, 
I am satisfied that by continuing his great and wonderful remedy 
a few months longer I shall again be able to go to work and sup- 
port my poor aged father, upon whom I have been a drawback in 
his declining years. 



James Kavanaugh, Jr., has all along steadily continued to 
improve. On January 20, 1890, I received a letter telling 
me that he can eat as much as any man, if he only had it. 
He says that his head is very much swollen, but not nearly 
as badly as when he began the treatment. There are still a 
few sores on his feet, from which a greenish matter exudes ; 
but the upper part of his body is nearly cleared of all appear- 
ance of disease, and no new ulceration has taken place. He 
further states that three physicians from the hospital have 
called to see him, and, after the closest examination, they 
besought him to go now to the hospital and put himself 
under their care. The reader will understand the meaning 
of this. They failed to relieve him when they had the 
chance, and now, finding him so much benefited, they are 
anxious to have some of the credit. 

This, however, I can say, that my patient will either be 
cured by the Microbe Killer, or he will die ; but the present 
appearances are favorable to a cure, and I advise every leper 
who can do so to go at once to New Orleans and see James 
Kavanaugh and his neighbors and judge for themselves. If 
any physicians attempt to remove the man, as they desire to 
do, I must take further action at once, although the revolu- 
tion in medical treatment must come sooner or later. The 
eyes of the public are being opened, and the Microbe Killer 
is in the hands of the people who make the laws and the 

In the last letter that I received from Kavanaugh, he says 
that he had had to stop the medicine for a few days, on 




account of some passing indisposition, and that he had then 
resumed it in smaller doses, but that all his wounds and 
ulcers had nearly healed, and that he was growing stronger. 
This completes the history of the case up to April 2, 1890, 
and, in a subsequent edition of this work, I hope to be able 
to report it as that of the first leper cured. 

Any favorable result must necessarily be slow. It is not 
dissimilar from one of phthisis, or low tubercular disease. 
They are curable, but time is required, sometimes two years 
probably, and Kavanaugh has not yet been one year under 
my treatment. The microbes must be destroyed, but, 
what is of equal importance and more tedious, the tissues 
must be renovated. The system must be built up, and this 
is where good nourishing food, which unfortunately Kava- 
naugh has not got, becomes almost essential. The case, 
even at this stage, testifies to the power of the microbe killer 
as an antiseptic. It proves that no microbes, not even the 
bacillus of lepra, can exist in its presence, and that they 
must cease to multiply in the tissues when these last are 
thoroughly permeated with it. 

It is difficult to take people out of their customary ruts, 
to make them reason for themselves on lessons which Nature 
offers, and to induce them to believe facts which are beneath 
their eyes. For ages, even throughout history, it has been 
customary to regard leprosy as an incurable, as well as a 
most loathsome, disease, and so it has been. But my con- 
viction is that a cure is now to be had in my discovery, and 
if I cannot convince others by putting before them truths 
which are tangible and cannot be controverted, it is not my 
fault. I am not responsible for the blindness of people who 
will not see, but most certain it is that the only case of lep- 
rosy that has come under my treatment, that, too, a very 
bad one, and surrounded by most unfavorable conditions, 
many of which are still at work, has been very materially 
benefited, while it is reasonable to believe that time only 
is needed for a further improvement, even to a complete 
restoration, to be effected. 



I TRUST I have now made sufficiently clear the position in 
which I stand with my discovery, the study which led me 
to it, the nature and universality of micro-organisms, their 
relations as a common cause of disease, the means to be 
employed to destroy them and to renovate the system, the 
failures of medical science and of ordinary remedies used by 
physicians, and the necessity for a complete saturation of the 
system with any medicine that must be effectual to remove 
the cause of the disease and to rehabilitate the blood. I will 
now state generally the rules that should be followed. 

I wish to say most emphatically that the microbe killer 
is harmless. I cannot lay too much stress upon this, first in 
direct contradiction to those who have asserted so gratui- 
tously that it is injurious, and then because it is necessary 
to use it in considerable quantities to renovate the entire 
system. I have shown that those persons, whether doctors 
or mere adventurers, who say that the preparation is poison- 
ous, do so without any real knowledge of the character of my 
discovery. It is neither poisonous nor injurious in the 
smallest degree, but, on the contrary, it may be given to the 
youngest children with most absolute confidence. It will 
not injure the eyes nor the most delicate tissues. It will not 
destroy the enamel of the teeth, although even this has been 
alleged against it by my enemies. It is slightly acid, but not 
as acid as ordinary pickles, which, indeed, may be injurious, 
because they contain acetic acid, sometimes even sulphuric 



acid. Be sure that those who bring charges against me of harm- 
ing people are merely trying to serve their own interests. 

The microbe killer cannot be compared with ordinary 
drugs. It does not contain any of them. It is pure water, 
permeated with gases which are essential to the nourishment 
of the system, and in which micro-organisms cannot live and 
propagate, or fermentation exist. It may be taken almost 
like water, and it must be so taken when a full and perma- 
nent effect is desired, so that the tissues shall be thoroughly 
soaked with it, and the blood become perfectly purified. 
Each one of my companies furnishes a separate circular which 
forms a general guide in using the microbe killer, for 
special instructions are not required here. I have already 
explained how to use it in chronic cases of long standing. In 
acute cases, where the progress of the disease is rapid and the 
microbes increase very fast, it must be used in large doses, 
and then it very often makes a cure immediately. If a 
person were attacked with cholera, small doses would of 
course be useless. Active disease requires active treatment. 
Very often every hour is of importance, and if time be lost 
at the start it is impossible to make up for it afterwards, and 
the patient dies before control of the trouble can be obtained. 
Thus in cholera the system must be thoroughly influenced 
as soon as possible with the microbe killer, so that the 
propagation of the micro-organisms shall be stopped at once. 
Intermittent fever equally demands the complete permeation 
of the tissues, but it is a disease that acts less promptly, and 
consequently a slower and longer treatment may be neces- 
sary. It may be taken, as a rule, that the more active the 
disease the more prompt must be the measures that are 
taken to overcome it, and the more chronic the disease the 
longer will be the time required to combat it. 

Whiskey is acknowledged by the doctors to be a good cure 
for snake bites, but of what would be the use to administer 
small doses at long intervals ? The patient would be dead 
before the second dose became due. It must be given in 
large quantities and with the least possible delay, and in that 


way only can it be of any service. A pint of strong whiskey 
or even more may, in these cases, be taken with advantage 
and without any injurious effects. The same holds good 
with the microbe killer in acute forms of disease. If some 
antiseptics, such as carbolic acid, bichloride of mercury, sul- 
phuric acid, and others could be used in that way, possibly 
many forms of disease could be cured that the doctors now 
describe as incurable. But it is not so. We cannot so use 
such antiseptics without killing the patient before getting rid 
of the microbes, and hence these diseases cannot be cured. 

To show how harmless my discovery is, and still effectual, 
I may say that I have sometimes taken as much as a quart 
in three or four hours for severe cold, but in every case I 
succeeded in breaking the cold up, or, to put it better, I 
destroyed the special microbes before they had a chance to 
go through the system. 

There are certain forms of fever very closely allied to each 
other in their symptoms. Of these we have what is com- 
monly called chills and fever in its mild form, then ague, 
dengue fever, bone-break or back-break fever, chagres fever, 
and the violent fever which is met with in the western part 
of tropical Africa. It is likely, too, that la grippe, which 
has been so prevalent this last year, is of the same kind. 
Differences here depend very largely upon climatic con- 
ditions, the severity of the disease being increased in tropi- 
cal and pestilential countries, and they illustrate the necessity 
of prompt action. In ordinary chills it may suffice to treat 
steadily and in fairly moderate doses, but in chagres fever 
large doses without loss of time would be the only means of 
saving life. 

When the case of leprosy already recorded was submitted 
to me, I saw at a glance that to stop the process of fermen- 
tation that was going on the unfortunate patient would need 
at least six to ten glasses daily, and that at the same time all 
the diseased parts should be kept in contact with the medi- 
cine so as to destroy micro-organisms on the surface and to 
have the full benefit of absorption by the skin. When this 

<* > ' 

' ' < " .. ' 

- ' 

< * 




was done decay or fermentation was arrested at once, or at 
any rate as soon as the system became permeated with the 
medicine. This done, it may sometimes happen that the 
dose may be lessened, but it is always better under all 
circumstances to use it freely, to take as much internally as 
the system can stand, and to apply it externally whenever it 
can be done with advantage. 

Leprosy and phthisis are very different. In a consump- 
tive patient there is a loss of part, or sometimes the whole, 
of an organ. The lungs are diseased, and portions at least 
of them are no longer capable of bringing the atmospheric 
air to vivify the blood. But in a leper the organs are not 
necessarily affected, and I should expect that leprosy will 
yield more readily than phthisis to the microbe killer, 
although, when too far advanced, both diseases are incurable. 
If a piece of meat be already fermented to a condition of 
putrefaction, it cannot be restored to its former condition, 
and that is much the case in the two diseases named. We 
cannot reproduce an organ like the lung that has been 
destroyed by tubercle, any more than we can reproduce 
a limb that has been removed by amputation. 

There is another reason. In a consumptive patient, the 
cause of fermentation, the microbe, can be destroyed, but 
the disease has weakened the recuperative powers of the 
body. Nourishment does not have its normal effect. The 
blood is impoverished, and the system cannot restore it 
quickly enough. So that, although the microbe be killed, and 
the state of fermentation be stopped, the patient is too far 
gone to be resuscitated. The blood has not time to be 
replaced, the tissues cannot be renewed. In short, it is 
more correct to say that a person in such condition is 
already more near to death than to a cure. 

At the same time, there is no reason at all why, in the 
early stages of consumption, a person should not be cured. 
There is generally a predisposition to phthisis. It is in- 
herited. But a person may inherit the predisposition to 
phthisis and yet die in old age of some other cause. It 


requires an exciting stimulus. Common cold is often the 
beginning of active consumption, and a cold can certainly 
be cured by the microbe killer, without leaving behind any 
germs of disease. 

The trouble may go further. Phthisis may have set in. 
The first stage, with cough and all the other symptoms 
of consumption, may have begun, and still I should not 
despair of curing. The fermentation may be stopped, and 
while the lungs are not seriously injured they may be 
healed, and at this stage the general system is not so weak- 
ened but that the blood may be restored. The nutritive 
functions do not give way all at once, and as long as the as- 
similative process goes on, and the diseased processes are 
stopped, a cure may be effected, and the person be restored 
to fairly good health, if not to the vigor that belongs to one 
who has not inherited any taint in the system. In such 
cases, although some people may be inclined to regard them 
as chronic, active treatment should be adopted, and the 
whole body should be brought under the influence of the 
medicine as quickly and effectually as possible. It may 
indeed be taken as a rule in every case to use as much 
of the medicine as possible until relief is afforded, because it 
cannot harm anybody, and always it is well to produce an 
effect as speedily as possible. It is easy to reduce the dose 
when the trouble is under control. 

In malaria and intermittent fever large doses should be 
used at first, and continued until the fever has abated or 
ceased, then more moderate doses will suffice, but they 
must be continued until the blood is purified, the microbes 
removed, the corpuscles restored to their normal healthy 
condition, and the patient shows this change by a return of 
the appearance of restoration in the superficial capillaries of 
the skin, which give a rosy color to the cheeks and a warm 
clear appearance to the complexion. 

With a correct understanding of Nature's laws, it becomes 
apparent that we can cure every disease that comes before 
us at the right time, if proper conditions are fulfilled and 


persevering and efficient treatment be adopted, because it is 
simply a purification of the blood that is demanded. If we 
attain to that, we have done all that is possible. It does not 
matter where the disease is, or how it may be classified, be- 
cause the- entire system must be purified, and thus every 
weak portion will be covered. It is unnecessary to inquire 
about details, suffice it to know that there is trouble of any 
kind, and the microbe killer will reach it. We cannot make 
a mistake. That would be impossible. I have but one 
form of my medicine. My discovery is Single. There may 
be different degrees of strength, but that is all. The com- 
position of the microbe killer remains the same. I have 
experimented to ascertain if I could improve it, so as to 
make cures more rapidly, but it cannot be done. It would 
be contrary to Nature. Progress must be gradual. We 
must aid Nature, we cannot force her. We cannot obtain 
any purification of the blood by injecting any thing into the 
circulation. The functions must be continued, and the 
blood must be nourished through them, for any permanent 
effect. Only in that way can we replace what is lost, and 
bring the blood back to a normal and natural condition. 

There is no inconsistency in what I have said about 
leprosy and consumption, or in the statement that all 
diseases may be overcome, but that certain stages of phthisis 
are incurable. When the true value of my discovery shall 
be known, leprosy, consumption, cancer, and such ailments 
will be unknown. People will not wait until a lung has 
become useless, or until a large cancer has actually formed. 
As soon as any premonitory symptoms arise, they will have 
recourse to the microbe killer. They know that, directly 
evidences of disease make their appearance, microbes are 
present, and they will not give them a chance to make 
headway and to get control of the body. They will have 
recourse without delay to the medicine, and the ailment 
will be stopped at the outset. Cancer or consumption, as 
we know them now, will not be permitted to develop. 

It may be well here while on this topic, to record the fact 


that the chances of inhaling the microbe of consumption, 
which is a bacillus, are very good. The habit of expectora- 
tion, which a recent writer names as one of the distinctive 
marks of the American people, viewed from an ethnological 
point of view, is not without its dangers. Bollinger has 
demonstrated that a cubic centimetre of phthisical sputum 
contains from eight hundred and ten thousand to nine hundred 
and sixty thousand microbes. So that in an ordinary day a 
consumptive person expectorates thirty or forty millions of 
these micro-organisms, from which it is estimated that, with 
about ten thousand tuberculous people in this city, three 
hundred thousand millions of microbes are thrown out daily. 
As the sputum dries on the ground or in street cars or 
railways, these microbes pass in large numbers into the air, 
and thus to some extent they promise to be injurious to 
healthy persons. 

It must not be supposed, therefore, that phthisis can only 
be obtained by heredity. There is no doubt but that the special 
bacillus may be taken into the lungs, and that if inspired in 
sufficient quantities, and unless the person be constitutionally 
strong enough to resist them, they may propagate and imme- 
diately proceed to bring about all the evils of consumption. 
Thus it is evident that anybody is liable to this dread 
disease, and especially are those liable who abide in rooms 
with friends or patients who are affected, and such persons, 
although apparently in perfect health, should use the microbe 
killer freely as a precautionary remedy. 

Prevention of disease is more important than cure, at least 
in one sense that is, it implies the preservation of health, 
whereas the other means only a restoration to health. Too 
little attention is paid to this. Bad drainage prevails in spite 
of all the evils that are known to arise from it. Diets are neg- 
lected because the people lack moral courage to forego 
satisfying their tastes even at the expense of their comfort. 
Injurious habits are persevered with, although those who 
follow them know well that they are shortening their lives and 
weakening their systems, and people often allow a fatal 




disease to seize them because they were too thoughtless or 
too indolent to take the necessary precaution to prevent it. 
Each is apt to think that he himself is secure from attack ; 
or sometimes persons may be prevented doing any thing 
because they do not know what to do, and they delay ap- 
plying for aid because they have not confidence enough 
in the doctors or money enough to pay the fees that would 
be exacted from them. The doctors themselves often let a 
patient die because they are dilatory and unwilling to obtain 
the necessary assistance. 

But this must soon stop. The day for a change in all this 
is near at hand. When people know that they have a certain 
and safe cure in their own home, which they can use in 
perfect confidence without advice or aid from any physician, 
they will not get sick ; they will not give disease a chance to 
get hold of them, but they will take the microbe killer, first 
as a preventive and then as a curative agent, directly the 
necessity for something makes itself known. I believe I 
have accomplished more in two years with my discovery, 
than has ever been done by any thing of the kind before, 
especially when I consider the opposition I have had to 
encounter from imitators and from the medical profession. I 
have done something which will reform the entire treatment 
of disease. I have put the cause of disease in a new light. 
I have enlightened the people, who have hitherto been 
the victims of ignorance and of the erroneous theories of 
medical science. I have shown the only means by which 
disease can be cured, and I have so simplified the whole thing 
that everybody may become his own physician, and thus 
avoid the perils that are necessarily involved where dangerous 
drugs are used and where empiricism forms so large a part in 
the physician's practice. Moreover, I have inaugurated a 
reform which will save the people from that most objection- 
able of all payments, the doctor's bill. 

The idea that any specific can cure all diseases has been 
made unpopular in many ways. Charlatans have come for- 
ward and made that pretence to advertise their wares, and 


they possibly sold something that would not cure any thing. 
Then of late years specialists have become more numerous 
within the pale of the profession. Formerly this was not 
considered in accordance with the strict laws of ethics, neither 
is it now, but nevertheless the custom has extended and is 
further extending, and specialism is in direct opposition to 
the principle I have laid down as the results of my study of 
Nature, and of my simplification of the cause of disease. 
Thus the idea has got about that nobody can cure all ail- 
ments, and when I introduced myself as ready to do so peo- 
ple thought me crazy. This was nothing. There are always 
plenty of persons ready to regard everybody else as mentally 
weak who happens to hold opinions different from their own. 
The doctors were most prominent in declaring me of un- 
sound mind, and perhaps if any two of them had had the 
chance they would have prepared a certificate which would 
have consigned me to a lunatic asylum. For the law gives 
them that power, and a very extraordinary one and a very 
much-abused one it is. Among my customers was a profes- 
sor who bought at different times many gallons of Microbe 
Killer, but he once said to me : " Mr. Radam, when you first 
introduced your ' Microbe Killer ' I told my wife about it, 
andshe said : ' Oh, I am sorry for Mr. Radam, the poor man is 
crazy.' " Yet he came to me, used a great deal of my medi- 
cine, and was very glad he had done so for it did him a great 
deal of good. 

I have often been amused at the way in which I have been 
talked about and the charges made against me, and still 
more amused when some of the people who were loudest in 
condemning me and pitying me were among the most faith- 
ful in availing themselves of my discovery and among the 
loudest afterwards in its praises. How many times I have 
been pronounced out of my mind I do not dare to say. It 
has been too many to keep record of. But I have grown ac- 
customed to it. It does not affect me. All proprietors of new 
inventions and all discoverers of even the most useful things 
have had the same to go through, and I know that I must 


submit to it. I can afford to take it all with perfect equa- 
nimity. I regard it as merely the idle talk of ignorant people, 
or the malicious talk of persons interested, and- unless it gets 
to be very unreasonable I can treat it with contempt. If, 
however, it passes beyond the limits that I am willing to 
allow, I do not propose to overlook it, and the people must 
be prepared to see me fighting my enemies without gloves. I 
am convinced that my discovery must be productive of the 
greatest good. It preserves the body from an enemy which, 
although invisible to the naked eye, comes to view under the 
power of the microscope and so places its existence beyond 
dispute, and if in like manner somebody will discover a means 
for destroying the devil, whom no instrument known has yet 
discovered, then the dawn of the millennium is at hand. Jen- 
ner discovered a means of mitigating the terrors of one dis- 
ease, Pasteur has applied the same principle to preventing 
another, and others have turned it into account to theories 
about preventing yet more. I have made a discovery which 
promises to prevent and to cure or to check the development 
of all, and I feel justified in claiming that much appreciable 
public benefit must be the consequence. 



THE hurried visit paid us by the epidemic last year, which, 
for lack of a better name, was called " la grippe," found the 
doctors absolutely unprepared. It came upon them suddenly, 
but not without premonition, if only natural signs had been 
observed. The newspapers did a great deal of harm. For 
the sake of making a sensation, they exaggerated and mis- 
represented the truth. They created groundless fears in the 
minds of the people, and by publishing alleged interviews 
with physicians who wanted to advertise themselves in that 
way, they showed how little medical science was doing to 
alleviate the disease. Druggists broke the law by prescribing 
for patients, and thus every thing combined to render the 
visitation much more serious than it would under reasonable 
circumstances have been. Many people who had only ordi- 
nary colds read the newspapers or rushed to the drug-stores, 
and immediately believed that they were on the brink of the 
grave, while others who had a genuine attack of the disease 
too often had to experience the utter ignorance of ordinary 
physicians as to the principles of successful treatment. But 
it afforded a good opportunity to test the effect of the 
microbe killer, and when this was used with careful 
attention to instructions its power was most marked. In 
order to emphasize the contrast I must, however, enter more 
fully than otherwise would be necessary into the subject, and 
since it involves several points of interest, I have no hesita- 
tion in doing so. 



It is remarkable how unwilling physicians are to lay aside 
old notions, and even now many of them are reluctant to 
admit that the epidemic was any different from what for 
generations had been known to them as influenza. It 
appears to have originated in a town a few miles southwest 
of St. Petersburg, but how we cannot say. One newspaper 
writer in London put forth the absurd notion that it was 
caused by the putrefaction of bodies of Chinamen drowned 
in the floods that occurred in China a few months previously ! 
A woman who publishes a small paper in Washington an- 
nounced that she had discovered the cause in some theory 
propounded by a friend of hers fifteen years before ! And 
these are only specimens of some of the wild suggestions 
that were made. The truth is that nobody has yet defined 
the cause of it, and probably never will, although guesses 
may be numerous. 

It spread rapidly, and in three weeks it was estimated that 
half the population of St. Petersburg was affected by it. It 
then travelled into Austria, and there attempts were made to 
define it. A correspondent writing from Vienna was unwill- 
ing to acknowledge that it was contagious, because there 
were instances where one in a family would be affected and 
all the others would escape. But, again, whole families might 
be laid down in succession, and yet again several members 
might be attacked and the rest be exempt. At first it 
seemed to be uninfluenced by age or sex, but later they 
noticed in Vienna that very old people escaped, while in 
New York the young people were rarely attacked. The 
incubation period was supposed to be about two days and 
I shall revert to that presently, then the active symptoms 
came on suddenly. They began with headache, shivering, 
and prostration as in other infectious diseases. In this city 
there were instances where persons fell suddenly unconscious, 
and remained either in that condition or in delirium for two 
or three hours. In one case that came to my knowledge a 
business man was stricken down at his desk, and was deliri- 
ous for fourteen hours under homoeopathic treatment. A 


physician of what is known as the regular school was then 
sent for. He treated it as a microbe disease, and in thirty- 
six hours the patient went back to his office well. The 
temperature was always high, sometimes as high as 105, but 
it fell as rapidly as it rose, and the disease seldom lasted as 
long as four or five days. Under proper treatment it usually 
ran its course in two. Convalescence was variable, but it 
seems to have depended more upon the treatment than upon 
the severity of the attack. The worst cases often got well 
soonest because more care was bestowed upon them. Re- 
lapse from neglect was very common, and bronchitis or 
pneumonia sometimes supervened from that cause, and 
proved fatal. In all these respects it was quite different 
from the epidemic of influenza which prevailed everywhere 
in 1847, m which severe catarrhal symptoms were most 
prominent. The French Academic de Medecine also deter- 
mined, after a very exhaustive discussion, that, although 
closely resembling dengue fever, it was not identical with it, 
facts which point to the inference, independently of any 
other knowledge we may have, that influenza, la grippe, and 
dengue are caused by three different microbes,' and that the 
difference of symptoms in different instances is due to con- 
stitutional influences or to changes in external conditions. 

It was about the last week in October, 1889, that la 
grippe made its appearance in Russia, and I never hesitated 
a moment to attribute it, as I do all other disease, to the 
presence of a microbe, but medical science was averse to that 
idea. Accordingly, the doctors dealt with it on their theory 
and I treated it on mine. Their cases derived very little 
benefit, and mine were cured. But now let us note how 
rapidly medical men came round to my views. The epi- 
demic stimulated inquiry, and in January Dr. Klebs, in 
Germany, who had been carefully examining the blood of 
influenza patients, found a micro-organism different from 
any previously described. It was oval in form, the long 
diameter being about twice that of the transverse, and it 
showed slight quivering or contractile movements. Stained 


with blue coloring matter, flagellae became apparent ; and 
what is especially worthy of note, is that these microbes were 
for the most part within the blood corpuscles, just as are the 
microbes of ague or malarial fever. Micro-organisms have 
also been found by Kollmann, Fraenkel-Weichselbaum, Rib- 
bert, Jolles, and others in Germany, and by S6e and Bordes, 
Du Casal, and Vaillard and Vincint, in France. At Bucha- 
rest most careful investigations have been made, and in the 
Centralblatt fur Bakteriologie und Parasitenkunde, Babes has 
described two forms of bacillus which he found in influenza 
patients, one being much more prevalent than the other. 

These must not be confounded with forms which have 
been illustrated in some of the sensational papers as having 
been discovered in this city. The latter are entirely decep- 
tive, and it is to be regretted that the exigencies of modern 
journalism should lead to the publication of many things 
which are calculated to deceive, or, what is worse, to make 
the people distrustful of the truth when it is honestly put 
before them. 

It has been difficult to obtain cases of la grippe for 
examination which were entirely free from other complica- 
tions. Dr. T. Mitchell Prudden has made some valuable 
investigations on the subject, but he could examine only 
seven cases, and he admits that three at least of these were 
complicated with bronchitis, but several forms of microbes 
were discovered in all. 

Dr. Jolles, of the bacterian laboratory connected with the 
general hospital at Vienna, is among those who have had the 
best opportunities of conducting the inquiry, not, be it 
remembered, an inquiry to settle whether or not there is a 
special microbe, for that is acknowledged, but to identify it. 
He and his associate, Dr. Maximilian, discovered traces of it 
in December last, and people who are accustomed to the 
use of the microscope know how difficult such results are to 
reach. They named it the bishop bacillus from a peculiar 
form which it presented at one of the extremities. They 
cultivated it in quantities. It is entirely different from the 


microbe of cholera and yellow-fever, but bears some resem- 
blance to that of pneumonia discovered by Friedlander. 
This is important, because influenza is by many persons 
regarded as a precursor of cholera, a supposition which can- 
not be sustained when it is shown that the microbes of the 
two diseases are essentially different. The same microbe is 
said to have been discovered by Dr. Jolles in water taken 
from a well in the Styrian Mountains. If this discovery can 
be sustained, it would point probably to a direction where the 
actual origin of la grippe must be looked for, the spread 
of the disease being due to its infectious and contagious 

Even this was denied by the doctors down to a very recent 
period, but they are gradually and apparently reluctantly 
accepting it. The following incident is of the kind that they 
cannot get rid of. There is a steamer called St. Germain 
trading between ports on the Mediterranean. On December 
2, 1889, it left Saint Nazaire. It put in at Santander three 
days after, and there took on board a first-class passenger, 
just arrived from Madrid, where la grippe prevailed. The 
health of the ship had before been good, but in twenty-four 
hours the person from Madrid was taken with la grippe; 
four days after the surgeon of the ship and a servant were 
attacked, and between the I2th of December and the 7th of 
January of this year, or in 26 days, no less than 154 out 
of 436 passengers, besides 47 men of the crew, were succes- 
sively affected. No better illustration of the transmissibility 
of the disease could possibly be desired. It completely upsets 
the theories of those who looked upon influenza in any or 
every form as purely a miasmatic disease, although among 
them were some who have always been regarded as leading 
authorities in medical science. 

It may then be quite safely affirmed at the present time 
that physicians have come to accept my view of the disease, 
and to acknowledge that it is due to the presence of a 
microbe which may or may not have been seen, and that it 
is both infectious and contagious. But the treatment that 


medical science has marked out is a curious testimony to the 
confusion that exists among the doctors directly they are 
called upon to kill that microbe. Among the drugs recom- 
mended for the purpose I find aconite, acetate of ammonium, 
opium, morphia, belladonna, calomel, phenacetin, Dover's 
powder, acetanilid, antipyrin, salol, salicin, salicylic acid, 
salicylate of sodium, convallamarin, strychnia, caffeine, cam- 
phor, sulphate of spartein, quinine, carbamide of quinia, musk, 
bromohydrate of quinine, tannin, arsenic, and how many 
more I cannot say. From the fact that some of these pow- 
erful agents are entirely different in their therapeutical effects, 
it is self-evident that they were selected experimentally, and 
without any definite purpose. Little wonder then that, 
while la grippe was present with us, the mortality bills were 
nearly doubled. Some physicians admitted that they could 
do nothing, and advised that in every instance the disease 
must run its course ; others and they were chiefly of homoeo- 
pathic pretensions floundered about with bryony, gelsemi- 
um, and arsenic, and with results that were unfavorable to a 
startling degree. This is what might be expected. Almost 
all the drugs I have named, and I have collected them from 
actual experience among physicians' prescriptions, are very 
powerful poisons. It would be impossible for any person to 
have the tissues of his body saturated with them, as I have 
shown must be done, and to live. He would die of the 
medicine long before it could reach the microbes. But the 
practice of the homceopathist involves the use of infinitesimal 
doses, which, even if the agent were effective, must be per- 
fectly useless. Homoeopathy is, in truth, nothing but a 
scientific name for the policy of doing nothing. It is simply 
absurd, and an insult to anybody's reason to ask him to 
believe that such quantities of any remedy as the homceopa- 
thist affects to administer, can permeate the system and pass 
into all the tissues. But unless it does that, it is worthless, 
and people who foolishly rely upon it are indeed trusting 
their lives to a broken reed. It is quite easy to ascertain by 
experiment the degree of strength which must be reached in 
any solution of the most powerful antiseptics in order to 


destroy microbes. A weak solution they resist. It is evi- 
dent that what they can resist outside of the body they can 
survive in the tissues, and that if we would destroy them we 
must permeate these tissues with an amount of the remedy 
that experiment shows to be necessary. No agent used on 
homoeopathic principles, under the most favorable circum- 
stances, has yet been known to kill microbes. Many interest- 
ing notes bearing upon my views of this subject are given in 
the appendix, but a careful perusal of them can only show 
the strength of my position, and point out conclusively how 
utterly at variance the medical treatment of la grippe has 
been with any consistent knowledge of its nature, or of the 
remedies that are necessary to cure it. 

The results of my own experience are more simple, and 
can be briefly disposed of. La grippe is a microbe disease. 
If the doctors allow their patients to die while they are mak- 
ing up their minds about it, my study of the laws of nature 
enables me at once to act upon the knowledge already at- 
tained. During the prevalence of the epidemic, many people 
availed themselves of the microbe killer, and none of them 
regretted it. They avoided the doctors, and merely exer- 
cised their own judgment while using the remedy under 
general instructions, and always with satisfactory results. 
Many took the remedy and were cured, and we heard no 
more about them. Severer cases came under notice more 
closely, and their progress was watched. I usually found it 
desirable in the first instance to advise a gentle laxative, 
especially when the symptoms were urgent, and after that a 
free use of the microbe killer taken in doses regulated by 
the age and constitution of the patient, and applied to the 
lining membrane of the nostrils and external air-passages 
when there were any catarrhal symptoms. The effects were 
speedy and effectual. A few hours often sufficed to alleviate 
the most painful indications, and improvement which began 
thus soon proceeded until a complete recovery was secured. 

I have said in the beginning of this chapter that the in- 
cubation period of the disease has been supposed to last 
about forty-eight hours. In many instances the patient is 


not cognizant of it, but where he is, immediate recourse to 
the microbe killer prevents the attack, or if absolute preven- 
tion be not obtained, the severity is so much lessened that 
the patient surfers nothing that renders abstention from his 
ordinary occupation desirable or necessary. During the 
prevalence of any epidemic the slightest indication of trouble 
should therefore be met at once by a liberal use of the 
medicine, and in that way a painful if not a serious illness 
may often be averted. 

Bronchial affections and diseases of the air-passages and 
lungs are promptly relieved or prevented. In New York 
liability to these complaints is unusually great. Sudden 
changes from the dry and overheated atmosphere of most 
houses, the bad construction of street and railway cars, where 
no control is exercised by conductors, and any messenger- 
boy or imbecile can open a window and so endanger the 
health of half a score of other passengers, are frequent causes 
of illness. They could, of course, be prevented, but they are 
not likely to be until people are intelligent enough to under- 
stand the danger of high artificial heat in winter, and until 
companies and public servants have some regard for the 
rights of individuals. American railroad cars have some 
advantages over the form of carriage adopted in Europe, but 
they are counterbalanced by numerous disadvantages, and 
among others the far greater safety and healthfulness of the 
European system is not the least important. This could be 
remedied in some degree if means of ventilation were 
adopted which involve less risk to travellers. Meanwhile the 
microbe killer presents a simple and effective remedy. An 
ordinary cold may be dissipated by its use in a few hours, 
using it as recommended in influenza ; and bronchitis, pneu- 
monia, and other diseases of the chest and throat may be 
entirely averted if treated in time, or speedily cured if resort 
to the remedy may have been delayed. These, however, are 
acute diseases, and the medicine must be used in sufficient 
doses and persevered with, as I have explained elsewhere. 
There is no ailment of any kind, acute or chronic, to which 
it is not applicable. 



MY experiments have developed many points of interest 
in the history of microbes, and the reader will be glad to 
know more of a subject of so much importance. 

The part which micro-organisms play in the economy of 
Nature is a great one, and it is quite worth while to look at 
their origin. This carries us back almost to the beginning of 
life. There was a time when the whole of organic nature on 
this globe consisted entirely of these little bodies and of their 
nearest kindred organizations. The length of that period in 
the world's history has been estimated at hundreds of mil- 
lions of years, or more than half the interval since the earth 
assumed its present form. Then they probably existed ex- 
clusively in the waters. 

The highest forms of vegetation in those early periods 
were the tangles or sea-weeds, such as are found in the 
Sargossa Sea now. No insects existed then. There would 
have been no sustenance for them, for there were no land 
plants nor any form of land vegetation. The air was dense 
with aqueous vapor, and hot. The primeval seas must have 
been warm too, and well adapted to the enormous increase 
and propagation of such organisms. 

Among animals the skull-less fishes were the highest. Of 
these only one, the amphioxus, remains. This little creature, 
about two inches long, and quite translucent, is found only in 
Europe, in the North, Baltic, and the Mediterranean seas. 
But insignificant as it may appear, it is of vast importance to 





the biologist, as forming a link between the vertebrate and in- 
vertebrate animals, and closing up a space that long existed 
in the chain of life indicated by the doctrine of evolution, for 
the amphioxus was discovered not many years ago. It 
possesses a backbone and spinal cord, but no brain, and the 
circulation is caused by the contraction of tubular vessels, 
not by a bulbular heart. 

Simple as this formation is, it nevertheless represents the 
highest form of animal life many ages after organic struc- 
tures had begun to fill the world, and when the waters were 
teeming with worms, ciliated larvae, and yet more primitive 
forms that were destined, after myriads of years, to lead to 
what we see around us now. There was no life on land. 
Remains of the organic forms of those far remote ages are 
still to be found, in Canada especially, but the soft parts of the 
minutest organisms have not been preserved, and precisely 
what they were can only be gleaned by analogy, although 
there is no reason to suppose that they differed from the 
forms of the present day. They constituted the basis of the 
whole of organic life as we see it now, and it is interesting to 
observe how they originated. They must have come from 
the simplest beginning, and Professor Haeckel, of the Uni- 
versity of Jena, has thrown full light on this part of the sub- 
ject by actual investigation, first at Nice, and afterwards at 
Gibraltar, and the Canary Islands. 

It is only of late years that we have become acquainted with 
the monera, which is the primitive form of organic life. The 
most remarkable was discovered by Huxley, and is found as 
far as twenty-four thousand feet under the sea, but they are 
abundant in fresh water also. They are little more than 
roundish, minute accumulations of mucus-like matter, adher- 
ing sometimes to small shells. They vary in color from 
white to a bright red. They possess no organs, but they 
float through the water and take nourishment. This is done 
in a remarkable way. When food becomes necessary, a 
number of fine thread-like arms are thrown out from the side, 
which presently enclose the minute particle that serves for 


food, and draw it towards the main body, into which it 
becomes absorbed. This done, the threads disappear. These 
bodies multiply very rapidly, a number of small globules 
forming in the anterior, which ere long burst their envelope, 
and immediately float about in the water, and attach them- 
selves to the first suitable object that comes in their way. 

The bodies of these micro-organisms are of such delicate 
construction that they must be ever changing their shape 
while in motion, but when at rest they are merely round cel- 
lular formations, no differently constituted than are some 
organic compounds obtainable in the laboratory of the 
chemist. The next higher form differs mainly from the 
monera in being able to take solid particles into the interior 
of a cell, whereas the monera obtains nourishment by diffu- 
sion only. But it also multiplies differently. It is a higher 
organization, and in place of being a mere shapeless mass of 
mucus, it is enveloped in a membrane, and is therefore a 
simple cell with a nucleus. This nucleus gradually divides 
into two, the cell-wall contracts between them, and thus two 
separate and independent bodies are formed. They take 
their food by the same process as the others. 

Advancing another step we approach a form like that of 
several of the microbes of the human body and disease. 
Some of them are simple cells, like the amoeba, but others 
more resemble the whip-swimmers, as they are termed, of 
this third development. In them we have a cell with a 
thread-like extension at one end, which gives them some- 
what the appearance of certain forms of microbe, especially 
those known as spirillae and bacilli. The whip-swimmers are 
found also in great abundance in both salt and fresh water, 
moving about by means of the thread-like process at their 
extremity. Some are provided with fringes or cilia, which 
further facilitate their movements, but in the forms which 
are found in man, and those producing disease, these fringes 
are usually absent. The whip-swimmers are supposed to play 
a chief part in producing that beautiful phenomenon common 
in all warm latitudes described as the phosphorescence of the 



(Milk Leg.) 


sea, and in fresh water producing the green slime of stagnant 
pools. All these organizations, so closely allied to the microbe 
with which we have to deal, do not live in the water. There 
are some forms at least which exist on dry land, and then 
they probably exercise fully as important functions as those 
in the water. Some are more closely allied to animals and 
some to plants, the difference being based on the presence of 
nitrogen or lime in their structure. 

The skeleton or the solid scaffolding of the body in most 
genuine plants consists of a substance called cellulose, devoid 
of nitrogen, but secreted by the nitrogenous cell-substance or 
protoplasm. In most genuine animals the skeleton consists 
of either nitrogenous combinations or of calcareous earth. 
Sea-weeds or tangles existed in primitive times with the 
monera, but the theory is now generally accepted that fungi 
arose out of the more simple form. The lowest fungi are 
those which produce fermentation, and it is not reasonable to 
suppose that they were a development from sea-weeds, 
although they exhibit a very close relationship to the lowest 

Not long ago a person writing to one of the newspapers 
alluded to microbes as animals, and the editor, in a foot-note, 
said that that was an error, and that they are in reality algje. 
Both views were wrong, and the true relationship of these 
remarkable bodies is as I have described. There are no 
fossil remains of them. 

Fungi differ from all other vegetable organizations, as I 
hinted previously. Other plants live upon inorganic food, and 
produce protoplasm by the combination of water, ammonia, 
and carbonic acid, whereas fungi live upon organic matter 
and are genuine parasites. Some even propagate in a sexual 
manner, and for that reason have been placed by a few 
biologists in the animal kingdom, but the distinction is not 
universally acknowledged, and they still hold their place in 
the vegetable kingdom. In the production of diseased con- 
ditions the fungus is no less active than the yet more simple 
forms in fact, it is probably more active, since it seems to 


possess a greater power in promoting fermentation. The 
exact rationale of this process has not, so far as I am aware, 
ever been explained, but when we know the peculiar differ- 
ence that separates a fungus from other plants it is not diffi- 
cult to form a theory. Take, for example, the microbe of 
intermittent fever. This circulates in the blood. It lives 
upon the blood corpuscles, destroying their vitality and form, 
appropriating oxygen and exhaling carbonic acid. The 
older chemists thought that it was a mere effect of contact, 
but that idea must be laid aside in view of the certainty that 
a chemical decomposition takes place, and that the destruc- 
tion of the properties of the blood is really due to that 

The extreme minuteness of these micro-organisms is a 
feature that must always be borne in mind. Not only are 
they small, often beyond reach of any but the highest micro- 
scopic powers, but their tissues are extremely delicate so as 
to render them imperceptible sometimes to all but the most 
practised eyes. For this reason it is extremely difficult to 
meet with them when they do not afford a sufficient resist- 
ance to light to enable us to obtain photographs or any 
natural delineation. 

And it was this difficulty which I had to overcome in pro- 
ducing most of the plates that appear in this work. No at- 
tempt had ever before been made to convey by means of 
such illustrations to the general public an idea of what 
microbes are, and when it is remembered that they are so 
minute and so translucent as scarcely to cast a shadow, 
the reason may be understood. So-called engravings of 
microbes of la grippe, for instance, and other diseases, which 
have appeared in the papers, are purely the work of some- 
body's imagination. They bear no resemblance whatever to 
the reality. 

This peculiarity does not affect the vitality of microbes. 
Minute and delicate though they are, they are extremely 
tenacious of life. They cannot be destroyed readily. When 
my factories were first established I had abundant oppor- 



*" A 




tunity to make a collection of numerous forms of microbe. 
My patients brought me bottles of matter, for examination, 
in a state of fermentation, and sometimes I discovered in one 
of them as many as from six to ten varieties, showing to me 
conclusively that that person had as many forms of disease, 
while the patient may have been treated for but one ailment 
by his doctor. Sometimes I received matter from the stom- 
ach of a patient immediately after he had taken his medicine. 
This I usually preserved for the purpose of learning whether 
the medicine would stop the fermentation. I kept the mat- 
ter in carefully stopped bottles sometimes for twelve months, 
and invariably I found that the fermentation continued. 
The microbes were not killed, but they went on multiplying 
throughout the whole time, showing that the medicine that 
had been given was utterly useless to destroy the cause of 
disease. Physicians are well aware of the ineffectiveness of 
many of their remedies, and they are willing to acknowledge 
among themselves that the only really powerful drugs in 
battling with microbes are fatal also to the patient. Of these 
the principal are corrosive sublimate and carbolic acid, but 
they must be used in considerable strength. Strong alcohol 
has no effect on dried microbes, but, especially if used in its 
fullest strength, it is a powerful agent when the germs are in 
a moistened condition. Boracic acid, once thought of so 
much value, has been shown to possess no action whatever, 
after ten days' trial the germs resisting it most effectually. 
Iodine has been tried for forty-eight hours, and found also 
to produce no effect. Chloride of zinc, oil of turpentine, 
thymol, and eucalyptol have yielded similar negative results. 
Ointments of iodoform and iodol are equally ineffectual. 
The strongest iodoform simply retarded the development of 
microbes after twelve hours' exposure. It did not kill them. 
Hot water does not destroy them, unless it be raised to near 
the boiling temperature. Permanganate of potash has been 
recommended, but the effect here is curious. Instead of the 
salt killing the microbe, the microbe decomposes the per- 
manganate and renders it ineffectual. Peroxide of hydrogen 


is uncertain, and at the best produces very little effect, and 
chlorate of potash is, for all practical purposes, useless. 

In like manner, physicians admit, as the teaching of ex- 
periment, that oil of mustard, arsenious acid, and even the 
much vaunted salicylic acid, are quite unreliable and ineffi- 
cient. It comes, in fact, to this, that the three most power- 
ful agents used by the doctors are carbolic acid, corrosive 
sublimate, and strong alcohol. But how can the body be 
saturated with either of them ? One sixtieth of a grain is a 
dose of corrosive sublimate, yet, to destroy the cause of a 
disease, it is necessary to reach throughout all the tissues, 
and long before that point were reached the patient would 
be dead. 

I wish to avoid conveying the impression to even the 
most unsophisticated reader that I claim any originality in 
attributing disease to the presence of microbes. That view 
is fully accepted by the medical profession. The difference 
is that, whereas physicians attribute only a few diseases to 
this cause, I aver that it is the origin of all. Every year, too, 
adds to the doctors' list, and zymotic ailments are gradually 
becoming more numerous. Even in diseases like smallpox, 
whooping-cough, and measles, where the special microbe has 
not been absolutely identified in the blood, its existence is 
admitted. In this way the whole subject has received atten- 
tion, and many points of interest and practical value have 
been obtained. 

Some forms of microbes have the power of producing 
spores, and these are more capable of resisting antiseptics 
than are the fully developed germs. Diseases, where this 
form of bacillus exists, are consequently more difficult to 
cure, and it is more than probable that smallpox comes in 
this category. Experiments instituted by Professor Koch 
for the German Imperial Board of Health are among the 
most important that bear upon the resistance of these organ- 
isms, and the effects of various agents. It created no little 
surprise among physicians when Koch reported that many 
of the most popular and, as was supposed, the most power- 


ful antiseptics or germicides were, in fact, of no use at all. 
Carbolic acid restrained their growth, but unless used in very 
powerful form, it was much less efficacious in destroying their 
vitality. A one-per-cent. solution required fifteen days in 
which to kill them, and then only when they were kept sub- 
merged in the fluid the whole time. It is remarkable, too, 
that, when the carbolic acid was mixed with alcohol, it had 
no disinfecting influence at all. Bisulphide of carbon had no 
effect upon them until a temperature of 176 was reached, 
which, of course, is far beyond any practical temperature for 
the body. Bacteria that are free from spores may be 
destroyed at 212, the boiling-point of water, but spore-bear- 
ing microbes will resist 280. Excepting the germ of yellow- 
fever, their bodies are proof against cold as well as against 
heat. The microbe of typhus withstands a considerable 
degree of cold, thus indicating a typical difference between 
that and yellow-fever. 

I have succeeded in propagating microbes in different 
fluids in which some of these medicines, as carbolic and 
muriatic acids, were mixed. Hydrochloric acid is indeed 
present in the stomach during digestion, where, being in 
small quantities, it certainly does not destroy fermentation. 
I have added to my bottles of microbe culture as much as 
twenty-five per cent, of mercury, and even with that degree 
of strength it required from three to ten hours to kill them. 
All this line of experimenting convinced me that I have to 
use large doses of medicine, and to carry it through all the 
tissues, if I would destroy the microbes of disease ; but with 
the medicines that the doctors prescribe, this cannot be done, 
and with the small doses they are forced to give, nothing but 
a very imperfect result is possible. I often found the con- 
tents of bottles which I carried about with me to be dried 
up. Nothing remained but a dry, dusty substance, which 
would break up like the ashes of a cigar. When I added a 
little distilled water to this, and allowed it to stand for a few 
days, the microbes would be alive again, multiplying as 
rapidly as before. Even if I had added alcohol to them in 


the dry state, they would not have been killed. Every 
housekeeper knows that yeast cakes may be kept dry for 
months, and that, as soon as they are moistened and placed 
under favorable circumstances, with a sufficient temperature, 
they induce fermentation. This is nothing more than the 
yeast plant, which is a fungus or microbe, revivifying and 
increasing and growing, feeding for the time on the material 
in- which it is placed, and, like an animal, giving out carbonic 

Some organisms cease to exist when the process of putre- 
faction to which they gave rise has attained to a certain 
excess, as if the results of the chemical changes were them- 
selves sufficient to destroy life. But this condition is be- 
yond my province to notice except as a matter of interest. 
Disease germs in a state of activity sufficient to reproduce 
disease may be conveyed, as already explained, directly 
from the body or discharges, including the exhalation from 
the skin, also from the clothes or bedding, or through the 
air or articles of food, or by dust that settles on the walls or 
floor, or from the soil, or through defects in sewerage. Fire 
is the only absolutely perfect disinfectant, but other means 
will suffice if accompanied by proper precautions. 

From what I have previously said it is easy to see how 
germs may be taken into the system from the atmosphere. 
Those ordinarily there may not be productive of disease, but 
that is of no practical import. I have shown the danger 
arising from the too prevalent habit of expectoration. But 
if we pass from out-doors into the sick-room it is greatly in- 
creased. A consumptive patient or any person suffering 
with diseases such as scarlet-fever, measles, etc., may be the 
means of allowing microbes to get into the bed coverings. 
This will dry up and remain there until disturbed, when im- 
mediately they float about the air and may pass into the 
lungs of other individuals. This again indicates two points 
that are not sufficiently attended to. One is the folly, before 
referred to, of having draperies, curtains, and hangings about 
the sick-chamber ; and the other the mistake that is often 


made in the use of disinfectants .after illness, since it is 
shown that germs in a dry state will resist antiseptics that 
would be effectual if they were merely moistened. It is for 
this reason that chlorine and sulphurous acid gas so fre- 
quently fail to produce the effect desired. Thus people are 
often very unnecessarily surprised when, after what they 
think has been a disinfecting process cholera, yellow-fever, 
scarlet-fever, or some disease of that kind will break out 
again often with more virulence than before. 

If meat that has been hung a few days in unfavorable 
weather, until an odor of fermentation can be discovered, be 
placed under the microscope, microbes may be detected pro- 
ducing fermentation and putrefaction ; and thus the nose 
becomes an organ to warn its owner against a danger which 
the eyes fail to discover. I have no doubt that consider- 
able sickness is caused by the recent custom of eating meat 
improperly cooked. Doctors sometimes order their patients 
to eat raw meat and to drink fresh blood. In these in- 
stances the patients take nourishment into the system, and 
they also take the germs of disease. We all know the ter- 
rible effects produced by trichinae that infest raw pork ; how, 
when taken into the stomach, they soon develop throughout 
the whole system, and the victim soon dies in indescribable 
torture. Persons who take raw meat, or eat underdone meat, 
are liable to a similar evil, if in a less degree. Microbes are 
not killed except by a very high degree of heat, a degree 
much higher than that which enters into the substance of 
meat that is insufficiently cooked. 

A temperature of 212 will, as I have stated already, suffice 
to destroy many germs, but there are some that survive a 
higher degree of heat ^unless it is continued for a considera- 
ble time. Epidemics are certainly conveyed in milk, but 
wherever the milk is carefully and sufficiently boiled no 
disease is ever induced by it. A case is on record where a 
number of persons were seized wijh a severe attack of chol- 
eraic diarrhoea after partaking of a boiled ham at a public 
lunch. It was proved that the meat contained numbers of 


spore-bearing microbes, which are always difficult to kill, and 
that" it had been insufficiently cooked. In another instance, 
similar results followed after a number of persons had eaten 
of well-cooked pork. But in that case the micro-organisms 
had taken their origin in the food after it had been cooked, 
a fact which again conveyed a useful lesson. 

It must not be supposed that salting meat has the effect 
of destroying the microbes. Cholera bacilli and some other 
disease germs are destroyed by salt, but the bacilli of infec- 
tious diseases of animals are hardly affected by it, and these 
are the most important. Meat containing the germs of 
tubercle can with great difficulty be freed from them. These 
germs will live in strong brine sometimes for months, a fact 
which cannot be too clearly remembered by anybody who 
may suppose that salted and corned meats must be free from 
germs of first origin. Even cholera microbes require a very 
strong solution of salt to destroy them. 

In freezing, the microbes of meat are not destroyed ; they 
simply remain dormant and cease propagating, as they do in 
dry dust, but as soon as the meat is thawed they begin again 
to do their work ; they increase and multiply ; the process of 
fermentation begins and that of putrefaction soon follows. 
It is extremely difficult to kill them. Even where sulphurous 
acid gas is used, several hours become necessary in which to 
continue the process, and all atmospheric air must be care- 
fully exclude'd. The sulphur gas must have access to every 
crack and crevice, for if but a vestige of microbe life remains 
it will develop and the fumigation or disinfecting process 
will have been in vain. To say that microbes may be dissi- 
pated or destroyed by firing cannon, building fires, or spray- 
ing something into the air, is simply' a result of ignorance. 
I have experimented in that direction and can prove my 

Microbes are known to exist in sulphuric acid and in many 
other powerful poisons, but they are not of a kind that 
would produce disease in the human body, because they 
could not find a suitable nidus there. It shows, however, 


what they may be, and how capable they are of sustaining 
life under conditions where it seems impossible. If mi- 
crobes from the body be placed in sulphuric acid, they are 
of course instantly consumed. 

The micro-organisms are universal. That fact will have 
been gleaned from what has gone before, when I have shown 
that they exist twenty thousand feet under the ocean, as well 
as in the air, and in almost all forms of organic life. If all were 
detrimental to the human body, we could not live for twenty- 
four hours. We inhale them with our breath, take them 
into the system with our food, and can barely handle any 
thing without coming in contact with them. Some are even 
healthful. The yeast plant is one of them, and the fungi 
that we have in wine, beer, and vinegar are not injurious. 
It is only disease-producing germs that we have to combat, 
and those which find a suitable nidus in the human body 
for propagation. 

Sometimes doctors have told me that in destroying disease 
germs we destroy also microbes that may be useful. To 
that I can confidently reply that I have destroyed disease 
microbes in myself and in thousands of other persons, and 
that if the good ones have gone too they have never been 
missed ; in truth, they are forming in our bodies every day 
and all the time. But these are injured by the others. An 
unhealthy tree does not produce healthy fruit, neither does 
a constitutionally unhealthy person produce healthy off- 
spring. His vitality is destroyed by another microbe, which 
is out of place and dangerous. But get rid of the disease 
germs, and Nature will supply wholesome ones that build up 
the system and produce vigorous health and life-giving 
powers. When a person tells me that he suffers from nervous 
irritability or depression, feels weak, and wanting in energy, 
is unable to bring himself to his work, and is generally in- 
competent, I know that he must take microbe killer, which 
will destroy disease germs and leave the useful ones to be 
reproduced and do any beneficial work for which they are in- 
tended. This can only be done when the body has been built 


up and the whole system is strengthened, so that the blood, 
purified and enriched, shall circulate freely and impart vigor 
and tone to the sensations as well as to the body. For with 
improved circulation the whole nervous system is strength- 
ened. Irritability and extreme sensitiveness disappear. The 
nerves perform their legitimate functions and the individual 
is brought up to a standard of normal health such as the 
body is fitted for. Water that is not kept in motion becomes 
foul and stagnant. Fungi grow in it, and fermentation and 
putrefaction are encouraged. And so it is with the blood. 
Directly it ceases to circulate freely we have an indication 
that there is something wrong, that it contains something 
that ought not to be there. - When it is well nourished and 
clear, so that it circulates freely, no palpitation or nervous- 
ness or any pain will worry us. Under that condition we 
cannot be sick or ailing. The blood is the life. If we can 
keep it always free from microbes and impurities, and in a 
condition where it furnishes sustenance to the tissues as it 
should do, we may prolong our lives till old age ends them. 
Children and young people who are free from hereditary 
trouble die, as a consequence of the ignorance of the medical 
faculty, who mistake or misunderstand the cause of the 
disease, and consequently err in providing a remedy. 

With the microbe killer near at hand sickness is shorn of 
all its terrors. We need not fear it, for the remedy is with 
us. We can stop it at once and renew ourselves again, even 
as a house may be painted again and again to preserve it 
from fungi, which, of course, cannot attack it as readily as 
though it were not painted. Precisely the same thing occurs 
in the body when the microbe killer is applied, as must be 
evident to those who have followed me through my descrip- 
tion of the cures I have effected in chronic diseases. Noth- 
ing is more simple than to cure disease when it first begins, 
provided we deal with it intelligently and according to the 
directions and principles that I have laid down. 

Any one who goes carefully through the foregoing pages 
will have to admit that I have set down nothing which is 


incapable of proof. I deal in no guesswork, empiricism, or 
theory, but in hard facts ; and these, I think, I have made 
so clear and so convincing that, in the face of them, medical 
science cannot stand before my discovery. If people would 
not be content to believe all that they hear and read, but 
would use their own reason and judgment, they would 
assuredly realize that we were not born to endure pain and 
misery, to lead a wretched existence without energy or com- 
fort, to crawl, as it were, through the world and then to sink 
into everlasting perdition, after making everybody around 
us miserable. 

The world is very much what people make it. Each of 
us is more or less the victim of circumstances. Perhaps if 
I had never been sick I should never have discovered the 
microbe killer. Very often, too, characters are formed by 
a long series of circumstances over which the individual may 
have had no control, and yet, if more people would exercise 
common-sense and intelligently use the abilities that they 
possess, very much trouble, disappointment, and pain would 
be prevented, and very many rogues, who now subsist by 
the ignorance or stupidity of the people, would be forced 
into earning an honest livelihood. The public faith and 
credulity about any adventurer who dabbles with drugs and 
promises, in specious advertisements, to cure some form of 
nervous debility or disease are astounding. I do not know 
of one honest man who is engaged in that kind of busi- 
ness. All of them live by plunder and deception and 
trickery, and they do so because the people they go among 
will not take the trouble to think for themselves. They 
invite misfortune. It does not come to them unsought. 
They lose their money through their own folly, and they 
receive no relief, because the people who promised to give 
it them are neither able nor willing to do so. They only 
want all the plunder that they can get by dishonest means 
without falling inside the pale of the law. 

Man had better never have been created if he was to be 
destined to everlasting misery and wretchedness. People's 


brains are not of equal value or equal force, but everybody 
has at least one, and, such as it is, he should make the best 
use of it. It must be a very bad one indeed if it cannot be 
made available to do a little thinking, if only just enough to 
take care of the body that it is attached to. The man who, 
unafflicted by disease or some natural debility, cannot take 
care of himself can hardly expect that other people will take 
care of him. People should not be led away by every charla- 
tan who jumps up before them and talks ; but as long as the 
world lasts there will probably be fools in it, and fools are a 
godsend to rogues. There is a fascination in being hum- 
bugged. Make it known to the world that you are going to 
do some impossible thing, and the world will pay money to 
come in and see you do it, although well understanding all 
the while that the thing cannot be done. It is a part pos- 
sibly of the perversity of human nature, which in practice 
refuses to realize that talking about something and giving 
proof of it are two very different things. There are hundreds 
and thousands of men, aye and women too, who have a 
great deal to say about disease and medicine who have the 
stamp of impostors branded on their face. It is not enough 
that a man shall promise to cure disease, let him give practi- 
cal demonstration of his ability to do what he says. Until 
he has done that, he is unworthy of credence or confidence. 
It is nothing that he writes books and calls it science, and 
asks the people to pay for it as such. He must show by 
actual proof that it is not the outpouring of worse than un- 
pardonable ignorance. Genuine science gives facts and proof 
that they are facts, so that people who will take the trouble 
may judge for themselves and be satisfied. 

That is the principle that has actuated me in my discovery. 
I religiously abstain from making any promise which I 
cannot fulfil. I have stated nothing as a fact which I can- 
not prove. I have given honestly and as plainly as possible, 
so that all may understand, the whole history of my discovery, 
how I came to make it, and what it has done, and there is 
not a single assertion throughout this book bearing upon the 


(Magnified with inch objective.) 



Microbe Killer which is not absolutely true. But to put the 
whole matter as concisely as possible, the facts which I am 
especially prepared to prove are these : 

I. That I have, by studying Nature carefully, discovered a 
preparation which is capable of curing any disease, 
and therefore is calculated to prolong life. 
II. That this preparation is entirely harmless to the human 
system, but death to microbes. 

III. That all diseases that have come under my notice have 

been cured by this Microbe Killer, not even excepting 
the relief and possible cure of that most dreaded of 
all affections, leprosy. 

IV. That in the short space of two years I have made a 

reputation for my medicine such as no discovery has 
heretofore gained. 
V. That no medicine or preparation of the kind has had so 

many imitators as this Microbe Killer. 

VI. That it is in consequence of my success that some 
members of the medical profession decry me and de- 
nounce me as surpassing all in the pretentious charac- 
ter of my claims. 

I stand upon these six statements, and I ask the people to 
whom the discovery is submitted to investigate for them- 
selves, and to be satisfied, as they must then be, that every 
thing I affirm can be substantiated and is sound. 



EXCEPT where otherwise stated all the illustrations of 
microbes are made from plates obtained from results of my 
own microscopic investigation, but under extreme difficulty, 
arising, as explained in the text, from the great translucency 
of the bodies of these micro-organisms. They are best ex- 
amined by a reading- or large magnifying-glass. Some per- 
sons find them well developed if looked at through an 
ordinary opera-glass reversed, the plate being held six or 
eight inches away until a focus is obtained. Whatever 
appears blurred or indistinct to the naked eye will thus be 
brought out more distinctly, and will better resemble the 
photographs obtained directly from the microscope. 

The white threads or spots are chains or clumps of mi- 
crobes, in fact single specimens have defied all efforts thus 
far to develop them by this method. 

Micrographs are generally made with an eighth of an inch 
homogeneous immersion objective. Taken with one of an 
eighteenth of an inch, and a four-foot camera and tube such 
as I used, they would be magnified from five to six thousand 
times. This, however, is only an approximate estimate, 
because the slightest vibration would alter the magnitude 

So far as I am aware microbes have never been photo- 
graphed either in Europe or America, all illustrations being 
sketches made from the microscopic field, and necessarily 



more or less imperfect. The general belief has been that 
they cannot be taken by microphotography, and my earlier 
experiences led me to the belief that that was true. I failed 
for several weeks. If I used too high a power I lost the 
light, and if I used too low a power I lost the microbe. But 
perseverance won the day at last. I worked and experi- 
mented persistently, and in that way the difficulties were 
overcome. All the plates lack definition more or less, but 
they represent the first that have ever been done, and in 
that way they are of value. Future development of my 
process may possibly lead to more satisfactory results. 

[While pursuing my inquiries I have met with various 
notes bearing upon the details of my investigations. Many 
of these are of interest as strengthening my views, or con- 
trasting with the results of my treatment of disease ; and a 
few of them I have deemed to be of sufficient moment to sub- 
mit to my readers, but in order not to break the uniformity 
of my previous narrative, I have preferred to collect them 
under the form of an appendix. They thus appear as sup- 
plementary to the text, but they will be found none the less 
instructive. I shall also avail myself of the opportunity 
which this arrangement affords me to demonstrate the kind 
of antagonism with which my discovery has been met.] 


A remarkable paper was read last year on this subject 
before the American Academy of Medicine, by Dr. Samuel 
N. Nelson, of Boston, and the Council deemed it of sufficient 
importance to select it for publication throughout the coun. 
try. Some extracts are as follows : 

The role of the micro-organisms called bacteria is at present 
probably occupying the attention of more scientific men than any 
other subject in modern science. Great numbers of observers 


are at work on both continents in the solution of the germ theory 
of disease. Comparatively unknown till within a few years, on 
account of their very minute size, these micro-organisms attracted 
attention and experimentation chiefly when the improvement of 
the microscope allowed objects of their size to come within the 
limits of its powers of observation. At first simply recognized 
as existing, their persistence and universality demanded question 
as to what they are, their origin, and object. 

The history of these micro-organisms is related to that of spon- 
taneous generation, to that of the fermentations, to the pathogeny 
and therapeutics of a great number of virulent and contagious 
affections ; and in a more general manner to all the unknown, 
which notwithstanding the efforts of modern science, still sur- 
rounds the origin of life and its preservation. 

The bacteria are the lowest of organisms belonging to the 
vegetable kingdom. 

The atmosphere transports myriads of microscopic plants and 
animals. M. Miquel has pursued interesting studies upon them. 
M. Pouchet has devised the aeroscope, that bears his name, for 
collecting dust from the air which contains remnants of articles 
that we use, existing in the condition of impalpable dust, also 
pollen of plants, particles of mineral matter, and the spores of 
cryptogams, the moulds, and algae. Some micrographers have 
suggested that germs may be transported by the vapor of water ; 
but Miquel's experiments show that the evaporation of water 
from the ground never carries any schizomycetes with it. On 
the other hand, dry dust, especially from hospitals, etc., etc. is 
charged with micro-organisms. The greatest labors, however, 
have been employed concerning a different class of organisms 
than the algae and moulds. The plants comprising this group, 
under the common designation of bacteria, in consequence of 
their extreme minuteness and refractive power, are invisible in 
the preparations of the aeroscopes, and are recognized only by 
the higher powers of the microscope. 

The first observer who recognized the micro-organisms was 
Leeuwenhceck, as early as 1675. While examining with his 
magnifying glasses a drop of putrid water, the father of micro- 
scopy remarked with profound astonishment that it contained a 
multitude of little globules, which moved with agility. During 


the following year he observed the presence of bacteria in faeces 
and in tartar from the teeth. 

M. Cohn is a naturalist who has occupied himself very much 
with the bacteria. In 1853 he published his first researches upon 
this subject, and twenty years later there appeared a series of 
" Memoirs " devoted to these organisms. In the first paper he 
gives an exposition of his researches upon the organization, de- 
velopment and classification of the bacteria, and upon their 
action as ferments. His classification is : 

1. The sphserobacteria, or globular bacteria. 

2. The microbacteria, or rod bacteria. 

3. The desmobacteria, or filamentous bacteria. 

4. The spirobacteria, or spiral bacteria. 

This classification has probably been accepted by more germ 
theorists of to-day than any other classification. 

The smaller spherical bacteria may be confounded with various 
objects, e. g. y molecular granules, fat globules, amorphous pre- 
cipitates, etc. To distinguish these pseudo-bacteria Nageli says : 
" There are but three distinctive signs which enable us to recog- 
nize with some certainty that the granules under observation are 
organisms : spontaneous movement, multiplication, and equality 
of dimensions, united with regularity of form." To which may 
be added the action of re-agents. 

The atmosphere is laden with these micro-organisms. Devel- 
oping in the organic infusions into which they fall, they soon 
determine their complete decomposition ; for during their growth 
bacteria live upon the nutritive material, as all other plants do 
upon their soil. This is putrefaction, and they are always pres- 
ent in some form or other in fermenting liquids. Fermentation 
only occurs after the access of particles from the outer world, 
and it is asserted by the supporters of the germ theory that these 
particles are organisms or their spores, and that it is by the growth 
of these organisms in the fermentiscible material that it undergoes 
alteration. The essentials for the production of new forms are : 
a putrescible body, water, and air ; while heat, light, and elec- 
tricity favor the process. 

As Sir William Roberts says : " Without saprophytes there 
could be no putrefaction ; and without putrefaction the waste 
materials thrown off by the animal and vegetable kigndoms 


could not be consumed. Instead of being broken up, as they are 
now, and restored to the earth and air in a fit state to nourish 
new generations of plants, they would remain as an intolerable 
incubus on the organic world. Plants would languish for want 
of nutriment, and animals would be hampered by their own 
excreta, and by the dead bodies of their mates and predecessors 
in short, the circle of life would be wanting an essential link. 
A large proportion of our food is prepared by the agency of 
saprophytes. We are indebted to certain bacteria for our butter, 
cheese, and vinegar. Our daily bread is made with yeast, and 
to the yeast plant (discovered in 1836 by Cagniard de la Tour, 
and also independently by Schwann about the same time) we 
also owe our wine, beer, and spirituous liquors. As the gen- 
erator of alcohol, this tiny cell plays a larger part in the life of 
civilized man than any other tree or plant." 

Unfortunately for us, however, they have a powerful potency 
for evil also, and it is the noble aim of science to be able, by 
thorough study of the conditions under which that potency is 
acquired and exerted, to keep it under efficient control. 

Much still remains to be determined with regard to the dis- 
ease-producing possibilities of the germs that in invisible clouds 
drift in the atmosphere. The more delicate and exact methods 
of the most recent observers Koch, Pasteur, Tyndall, Ehrlich, 
Ogsten, Sternberg, and others with regard to their nature seem 
to show that there are many varieties of them, each of which has 
its own condition of growth, requiring or developing best in a 
particular soil. Different species multiplying in different media 
and varying in their susceptibility to different temperatures and 
to different chemical reagents. Apparent identity of form does 
not necessarily indicate identity of nature. They are not con- 
vertible into each other. Each species produces only itself, and 
is produced by itself alone, and when introduced into a sub- 
stance that affords a favorable soil for its growth, always pro- 
duces the same results. These results are not produced suddenly, 
but are of gradual development, progressing with the slow and 
steady multiplication of the organism. They may be cultivated 
artificially in either solid or liquid media. 

It has been a widely disputed question as to whether bacteria 
ever occur in the animal in a perfectly healthy state ; the affirma- 


tive view having been taken by Billroth and some others ; but it 
is denied by Koch, by Pasteur, and by Ehrlich, who state that 
they have never detected bacteria in the healthy animal. The 
failure of putrefactive bacteria, according to experiments, would 
go to show inability to struggle against the normal cells indige- 
nous to the soil upon which they are planted. Some bacteria 
showed power of existence only in tissue in which vitality had 
entirely ceased, while others seemed to possess the power of 
existence in the presence of the animal cells when the latter suf- 
fered from impairment of nutrition, and the tide of life was turn- 
ing against them. Abnormal composition of the blood seemed 
to favor the development of some bacteria, after they had found 
their way into the tissues. e 

The theory of a causal relation between bacteria and diseased 
processes has recently received a wide acceptation. In some 
diseases this relation is established, while in others it is presumed 
on the ground that bacteria are found in the blood and diseased 
products. As additional evidence in favor of special bacteria 
for different diseases, the fact is advanced that bacteria found in 
different diseases have been discovered to have different mor- 
phological and chemical properties ; to which may be added 
of still greater value, the different appearances presented by the 
colonies growing upon solid culture media. 

Admitting this causal relation of bacteria to disease, it must 
be demonstrated by successive cultures of the bacteria found to 
exist in the diseased person, and by the induction of the same 
disease in man or healthy animals by inoculation, with a repro- 
duction of bacteria. The first discovery of the association of a 
germ with disease was by Pollender, in 1849, wno found certain 
rodlets in the blood of animals suffering with splenic fever, also 
variously known as anthrax, charbon, miltzbrand, malignant 
pustule, and wool-sorter's disease. The specific character of the 
parasite was afterwards pointed out by Davaine (1863), and sub- 
sequently carefully investigated and confirmed by Pasteur and 
Koch. The bacillus can be isolated and developed in proper 
cultivating media, and, when inoculated into some animals will 
produce splenic fever. 

Again, in 1873, Obermeyer, of Berlin, discovered a bacterium 
in the blood of patients suffering from relapsing fever, which has 


been named Spirillum Obermeyeri. It is found only during the 
febrile paroxysm, disappearing during the interval. So far, 
attempts at cultivation have proved unsuccessful. 

In March, 1882, Koch, of Berlin, announced the discovery of 
the Bacillus tuberculosis, which he asserted to be the exciting 
cause of tuberculosis. His results have been confirmed by many 
observers, and the bacilli have been found in the tubercles and 
sputa of persons suffering from phthisis. As you all know, they 
reproduce themselves when cultivated under proper conditions, 
and cause tuberculosis when inoculated into animals. 

The discovery of the parasitic origin of glanders followed 
closely upon that of the bacillus of tuberculosis. This was also 
made in Koch's laboratory by Prof. Schultz and Dr. Loeffler ; 
and the results were verified by pure cultures and inoculation. 

Birch-Hirschfeld has confirmed the discovery of the presence 
of a micro-organism of syphilis, already announced by Aufrecht, 
which consists of oval-shaped micrococci in chains. 

In gonorrhoea a micrococcus was discovered by Neisser, isolated, 
cultivated, and, it is reported, successfully inoculated. 

Bacteria have also been found in malaria and in whooping- 
cough. A micrococcus has also been found associated with 
croupous pneumonia, by Friedlander. This may occur singly, 
but it is generally found as a diplococcus. 

Von Recklinghausen first described the bacteria of typhoid 
fever ; and Klebs, in 1881, described a large bacillus, which he 
calls B. . typhosus, in which spores are found in the centre, and 
often at the end. This is carried by the blood and lymphatics, 
and is found in all the organs. It is more generally believed, 
however, that the causa- morbi is a peculiar short bacillus dis- 
covered by Eberth. This is rounded at both ends, and has 
spores. It is found in the ulcers, mesenteric glands, and spleen, 
and has been cultivated by Gaffky. The inoculation of animals 
has not been successful ; but it must be remembered that they 
do not have the disease spontaneously. 

The Micrococcus vaccinia is very small, and is found isolated or 
in pairs, and when cultivated forms chaplets. Cohn regards M. 
vaccinia and M. variola as different races of the same species, 
but Magnin thinks them identical. In small-pox, Chauveau 
(1868) first proved a particular non-diffusible active principle ; 


and Cohn (1872) first proved that the lymph contains numerous 

The comma bacillus of cholera (Koch, 1883) has of late 
attracted much attention. They are found chiefly in the excreta 
of cholera patients, are slightly curved like a comma or half of 
the letter U, and occur single or in pairs like the letter S ; when 
their growth is retarded they form a spiral chain of several mem- 
bers. They are easily cultivated on nutrient gelatine, forming a 
growth easily distinguished from others, even from those which 
are morphologically similar. After much experimentation Koch 
has succeeded in inoculating animals. 

In scarlet-fever, Coze and Feltz have found micrococci in the 
blood, and inoculation of rahbits sometimes produced death. 

In measles, Coze and Feltz found bacteria in the blood which 
were minute and mobile. The rabbits were not killed. Braid- 
wood and Vacher caused children with measles to breathe 
through glass tubes coated with glycerine, and found sparkling 
bodies, something like those in vaccinia, but larger. These were 
most abundant during the second and third days. They also 
found them in the lungs and livers of two children who had died 
of the disease. 

The individuals of the streptococci of erysipelas are smaller 
than the micrococci of cow-pock. Lukoinsky found them in 
masses in the lymphatics, on the border of the erysipelatous zone. 
Fehleisen also found and cultivated them. He inoculated the 
ears of nine rabbits, and produced the characteristic rash in from 
thirty-six to forty-eight hours ; the animals did not die. He also 
produced typical erysipelas, in from fifteen to sixty hours, in men 
who were inoculated to produce beneficial results in tumors. I 
have also cultivated them in liquid media. 

Septicasmia and pyaemia have been carefully investigated by 
Koch ; and these diseases have been found due to bacteria, which 
he has cultivated and inoculated. 

In diphtheria, micrococci are found in the membrane and in 
the surrounding lymphatics, blood, kidneys, and muscles. They 
are about the size of M. vaccinia, slightly oval, single or in pairs, 
and in colonies. Eberth showed the particulate character by 
filtration. Klebs claims to have produced diphtheria from in- 
oculation of pure cultures, and to have found micrococci in the 


tissues and blood. Nasiloff inoculated the cornea with enormous 
multiplication of micro-organisms in the lymphatics of the palate, 
bones and cartilages, and says that they are the primary step. 

The question as to the origin of life has been much disputed, 
and the exponents of spontaneous generation and of the germ 
theory still continue the contest. 

Extremists in the doctrine of evolution cannot sustain the 
hypothesis that the whole system of animal life is but a growth 
of one or more original species, changing into or evolving others 
through methods of development. The long ages of the past 
show the universality of the law of life, that like produces like. 

Neither the agnostic nor the materialist can account for the 
origin of matter, much less can they account for the origin of 
mind. Naturalists tell us that while the animal and vegetable 
kingdoms are reducible to primordial cells ; that while there is a 
time when the embryos of species cannot be distinguished from 
each other by any essential features, yet the variety of structural 
forms, and the diversity of physiological functions which cells 
develop, are always according to the special type and construc- 
tion of their parent cells ; evidencing a unity of plan in their 
construction and development. 

1. The germ theory asserts that no life has been evolved (ex- 
cept in the remotest periods of the earth's history) other than 
from a living parent or a living germ. 

2. The spontaneous-generation theory asserts that now, as of 
old, life does also spring de novo from molecular rearrangements 
of the atoms of dead organic matter. 

No authority, except that of experimental work, can weigh a 
feather' in a balance ; no a-priori reasoning can give the victory 
to either creed. The one condition is, to take dead matter, 
isolate it from all contact with life, place it under favorable 
conditions for development, and watch the result. 

The first views founded on experiment and observation, apart 
from mere philosophical speculation, are those of Needham and 
Buff on, published in 1748. Needham's theory was that vitality 
is produced by a force setting particles in motion, which he calls 
force vtgttatrice. Needham was opposed by Spallanzani, in 1777, 
who repeated his experiments by methods so precise as to over- 
throw the convictions based on Needham's labors. Schultz made 


an important advance by boiling his infusions and using pure air, 
and was followed by Schwann, Schroeder, and Von Dusch. In 
1859, Pouchet, one of the most ardent supporters of spontaneous 
generation, published his work. He does not look on these 
organisms as originating from dead matter, though he believes 
that it is the contact of different bodies which gives rise to the 
development of proto-organisms. Yet their origin is not due to 
affinity alone ; vital force must also come into play, which owes 
its power to certain unknown concomitant circumstances. The 
essentials for the production of the new forms are, a putrescible 
body, water, and air, while heat, light, and electricity favor the 
process. His experiments were performed very loosely, and are 
subject to many errors. 

Appearing shortly after Pouchet's work, and leading to dia- 
metrically opposite conclusions, were the researches of M. Pas- 
teur, who begins by attempting to demonstrate the existence of 
spores in the atmosphere. The greatest blow was given to the 
views of the heterogenists when Pasteur demonstrated that 
albuminoid materials are not necessary for the development of 
bacteria and fungi, but that they can be replaced by crystalline 
salts, such as phosphates and the salts of ammonia. 

The experiments of Prof. Jeffreys Wyman have been largely 
quoted by the supporters of heterogenesis as proving their view, 
though Wyman himself expressed no such opinion, having 
approached the subject with a perfectly unbiased mind. To 
Prof. Wyman is ascribed great credit by Cheyne, whose results 
agree with his own. 

Dr. Bastian (1872) gives up the theory that organic molecules 
are derived from previously living molecules, and attempts to 
demonstrate that vital force and living matter may arise de novo 
under the action of the ordinary physical forces heat, light, and 
electricity. This change of front on the part of the heterogenists 
is clearly brought about by the overwhelming evidence produced 
against Pouchet's views, and more especially by Pasteur's success 
in cultivating organisms from dust in fluids containing no organic 

The limitation of cases of spontaneous generation which has 
been gradually taking place is very instructive. Beginning with 
the higher animals, it became more limited, frogs, flies, etc., being 


by degrees excluded, till now it is only in the case of the lowest 
forms of life that the doctrine is asserted, and even then only in 
certain cases. 

Not long since the people of Boston were invited to listen to a 
series of lectures which continues the discussion of the much 
disputed question of the origin of life. The lecturer, although 
announcing himself as a decided opponent of the germ theory, 
could not agree with the spontaneo-generationists, and offered 
views somewhat peculiar to himself. His objective point was the 
so-called "ambient organic matter" of which he could give no 
definition ; but in a long series of illustrations of what he meant, 
he showed it to be synonymous with the bioplasm of Dr. Lionel 
Beale. The term bioplasm, as Dr. Beale says, involves no theory 
as regards the nature or origin of the matter. It simply dis- 
tinguishes it as living, e. g., a living white blood corpuscle is a 
mass of bioplasm, or it might have been termed a bioplast ; a very 
minute living particle is a bioplast, and we may speak of living 
matter as bioplasmic substance. It is bioplasm, or ambient 
organic matter, according to the new view, that is at the bottom 
of all the functions of life, it having, to a certain extent, a low 
degree of inherent vitality ; and the results of the various experi- 
ments that have been performed are due to the ambient organic 
matter, which has never yet been separated, it was urged, from 
the germs. 

It was argued that the germ theorists can prove nothing till 
they can isolate an organism on a needle-point and use it for 
inoculation, after thoroughly washing and drying. Floating dust 
of the air, he added, is not germs, but ambient organic matter. 
He also expressed a desire to introduce some ambient organic 
living matter into the infusions and see what it would do. 


In. Dr. Nelson's paper, read before the American Academy 
of Medicine, it is assumed that the relation of microbes to 
disease must be demonstrated by successive cultures. This 
view was supported by Dr. Vaughan at a meeting of the 


American Medical Association, held at Newport last year, 
who formulated it thus : " That before we admit that a cer- 
tain micro-organism is the cause of a disease, we must isolate 
from cultures of this organism chemical products which are 
capable, by inoculation or feeding, of producing the symp- 
toms of the disease." 

In a discussion, Dr. W. H. Welch, of Baltimore, dissented 
from that view. 

He thought that, while it is an important addition to our knowl- 
edge of a disease to become acquainted with such chemical prod- 
ucts, yet this is not essential to a belief in the causative agency of a 
specific organism. If Dr. Vaughan's condition be accepted as an 
essential link in the chain in proof, then we have no sufficient 
evidence that many recognized infectious organisms, such as the 
spirillum of relapsing fever, the bacillus of leprosy, or even the 
tubercle bacillus are the causes of their respective diseases. 
From our present knowledge we are justified in believing that a 
micro-organism which is invariably associated with a disease, 
which is found in the lesions of a disease, and in situations which 
explain the symptoms and lesions, and which is never found 
except in association with the disease, must be regarded as the 
cause of the disease. Where, in addition to this, we are able 
by experiments on animals to reproduce the disease by inocula- 
tion of pure culture, this additional proof is most welcome. But 
in many infectious diseases we cannot furnish this last method of 
proof, either because we have not been able to isolate and culti- 
vate the suspected organism, as is the case with relapsing fever, 
or because animals available for experiment are not susceptible 
to the disease, as seems to be true of typhoid fever and cholera. 
For this reason Koch has stated that it is not absolutely neces- 
sary that we reproduce the disease experimentally in animals by 
inoculation before we admit that a given organism found associ- 
ated with a disease under the conditions stated is the specific 
cause of the disease. The evidence Dr.Welch believed to be conclu- 
sive, that the typhoid bacillus is the specific cause of typhoid fever. 

Dr. Vaughan criticised the remarks of Dr. Welch as an affirma- 
tion that the first of Koch's rules is all that is necessary in order 
to prove that a given germ is the cause of a disease ; in other 
words, because Eberth's germ is found in every case of typhoid 


fever it must be the cause of that disease. He did not think 
that all the failures to induce the disease by inoculation with this 
germ are of any significance as to its cause. " When Koch first 
promulgated his four rules, and pronounced that they must be 
complied with before the causal relation of a germ to a disease 
should be considered as demonstrated, the scientific accuracy of 
such a demonstration won the confidence of the medical world. 
Now Professor Welch says that three of these four rules are 
unnecessary. He claims that the presence of the Eberth germ 
in the altered tissue of typhoid fever is a proof that these germs 
cause typhoid fever. How does he know that the presence of the 
germ is the cause and not the result of the disease ? He reaches 
this conclusion by reasoning from analogy. This kind of reason- 
ing may have its value, but it is not scientific. Suppose that an 
inhabitant of some far-off planet should, by means of optical 
instruments, be able to discern the inhabitants of a certain por- 
tion of the globe. Suppose that the portion of the globe which 
should fall under his observation to be the frigid zone. Here 
he would find the inhabitants living in houses built of snow and 
ice, and, reasoning by analogy, he might conclude that all the 
inhabitants of the earth live in houses of that kind. The reason- 
ing of Professor Welch is just as unscientific as that in the sup- 
posed case of the planetary observer. Condensed, his reasoning 
would be about as follows : (i) The bacillus of consumption is 
found in every case of consumption, and the Eberth germ is 
found in every case of typhoid fever. (2) The bacillus of tuber- 
culosis has been demonstrated to be the cause of consumption. 
(3) Therefore the Eberth germ is the cause of typhoid fever." 

This is interesting as showing differences of opinion among 
careful observers and physicians of recognized authority in 
their profession, but the rules laid down by Dr. Vaughan are 
those most generally accepted. They are more precise in 
affording the proof which reason and science alike demand. 


In a recent number of the Medical News Dr. William H. 
Welch gave a brief but interesting summary of the prevalent 
knowlege of microbes in the medical profession. He said : 


No department of medicine has been cultivated in recent 
years with such zeal and with such fruitful results as that relating 
to the causes of infectious diseases. The most important of these 
results for preventive medicine, and for the welfare of mankind, 
is the knowledge that a large proportion of the causes of sickness 
and death are removable. 

While nothing should be said or need be said to lessen the 
importance of cleanliness for public health, it is important to bear 
in mind that hygienic cleanliness and aesthetic cleanliness are not 
identical. In water which meets the most severe chemical tests 
of purity, typhoid bacilli have been found. On the other hand, 
the air in the Berlin sewers, which certainly do not meet the 
most modest demands for aesthetic cleanliness, has been found to 
be nearly or quite free from bacteria. 

It has always been recognized that some infectious diseases, 
such as the exanthematous fevers, are conveyed directly from the 
sick to the healthy. It is not disputed that in these evidently 
contagious diseases the infectious germ is discharged from the 
body in a state capable at once of giving rise to infection. 

In a second group of infectious diseases, of which malaria is 
the type, the infected individual neither transmits the disease to 
another person, nor, so far as we know, is capable of infecting a 
locality. Here there is reason to believe that the infectious germ 
is not thrown off in a living state from the body, but is destroyed 
within the body. In this group the origin of infection under nat- 
ural conditions is always outside of the body. 

In a third group there is still dispute whether the disease can 
be transmitted directly from person to person, but all are agreed 
that the infected individual can infect a locality. It is especially 
fortunate that the bacteria which cause cholera and typhoid 
fever, the two most important representatives of this group of 
so-called miasmatic-contagious diseases, have been discovered and 
isolated in pure culture. These are the diseases about whose 
origin and epidemic extension there has been the greatest contro- 
versy. They, above all other diseases, have given the impulse to 
public sanitation during the last half century. The degree of 
success with which their extension in a community is prevented 
is an important gauge of the excellence of the local sanitary 
arrangements. A clear comprehension of the origin and spread 


of these diseases signifies the solution of many of the most vexed 
and important problems of epidemiology and of State hygiene. 

It is universally admitted that many infectious agents may 
be transported by the air, but the extent of danger from this 
source has often been exaggerated. It is a popular error to sup- 
pose that most of the minute particles of dust in the air either are 
or contain living organisms. The methods for determining the 
number and kind of bacteria and fungi in the air are now fairly 
satisfactory, although by no means perfect. These have shown 
that while the number of living bacteria and fungi in the atmos- 
phere in and around human habitations cannot be considered 
small, still it is greatly inferior to that in the ground or in most 
waters. Unlike fungus spores, bacteria do not seem to occur to 
any extent in the air as single detached particles, which would 
then necessarily be extremely minute, but rather in clumps or 
attached to particles of dust of relatively large size. As a result, 
in a perfectly quiet atmosphere these comparatively heavy parti- 
cles which contain bacteria rapidly settle to the ground or upon 
underlying objects, and are easily filtered out by passing the air 
through porous substances, such as cotton-wool or sand. Rain 
washes down a large number of bacteria from the air. 

That the air bacteria are derived from the ground, or objects 
upon it, is shown by their total absence, as a rule, from sea air at 
a distance from land, this distance varying with the direction and 
strength of the wind. 

A fact of capital importance in understanding the relations 
of bacteria to the air, and one of great significance for preventive 
medicine, is the impossibility of currents of air detaching bacte- 
ria from moist surfaces. Substances containing pathogenic 
bacteria as, for instance, sputum containing tubercle bacilli or 
excreta holding typhoid bacilli, cannot, therefore, infect the air 
unless these substances first become dry and converted into a 
fine powder. We are able to understand why the expired breath 
is free from bacteria and cannot convey infection, except as little 
particles may be mechanically detached by acts of coughing, 
sneezing, or hawking. Those bacteria, the vitality of which is 
rapidly destroyed by complete desiccation, such as those of 
Asiatic cholera, evidently are not likely to be transported as in- 
fectious agents by the air, if we except such occasional occur- 
rences as their conveyance for a short distance in spray. 


The only pathogenic bacteria which hitherto have been found 
in the air are the pus organisms, including the streptococcus 
found by Prudden in a series of cases of diphtheria and tubercle 
bacilli ; but no far-reaching conclusions can be drawn from the 
failure to find other infectious organisms when we consider the 
imperfection of our methods and the small number of observa- 
tions directed to this point. The evidence in other ways is con- 
clusive that many infectious agents and here the malarial germ 
should be prominently mentioned can be and often are con- 
veyed by the air. While we are inclined to restrict within nar- 
rower limits than has been customary the danger of infection 
through the air, we must recognize that this still remains an im- 
portant source of infection for many diseases. All those, how- 
ever, who have worked practically with the cultivation of micro- 
organisms have come to regard contact with infected substances 
as more dangerous than exposure to the air, and the same lesson 
may be learned from the methods which modern surgeons have 
found best adapted to prevent the infection of wounds with the 
cosmopolitan bacteria which cause suppuration. 

We are not, of course to suppose that infectious germs float- 
ing in the form of dust in the atmosphere are dangerous only 
from the possibility of our drawing them in with the breath. 
Such germs may be deposited on substances with which we read- 
ily come into contact, or they may fall on articles of food where 
they may find conditions suitable for their reproduction, which 
cannot occur when they are suspended in the air in consequence 
of the lack of moisture. 

Let us pass from the consideration of the air as a carrier of 
infection to another important source of infection namely, the 
ground. The ground, unlike the air, is the resting- or the breed- 
ing-place of a vast number of species of micro-organisms, includ- 
ing some which are pathogenic. Instead of a few bacteria or 
fungi in a litre as with the air, we find in most specimens of earth 
thousands, and often hundreds of thousands, of micro-organisms 
in a cubic centimetre. Frankel found the virgin soil almost as 
rich in bacteria and fungi as that around human habitations. 

We have but meagre information as to the kinds of bacteria 
present in the ground in comparison with their vast number. 
Many of those which have been isolated and studied in pure cul- 


ture possess but little interest for us so far as we know. To some 
of the micro-organisms in the soil appears to be assigned the role 
of reducing or of oxidizing highly organized substances to the 
simple forms required for the nutrition of plants. We are in the 
habit of considering so much of the injurious bacteria that it is 
pleasant to contemplate this beneficent function so essential to 
the preservation of life on this globe. 

Among the pathogenic bacteria which have their natural home 
in the soil, the most widely distributed are the bacilli of malig- 
nant oedema and those of tetanus. I have found some garden 
earth in Baltimore extremely rich in tetanus bacilli, so that the 
inoculation of animals in the laboratory with small bits of this 
earth rarely fails to produce tetanus. In infected localities the 
anthrax bacillus and in two instances the typhoid bacillus, so far 
as it was possible to identify it, have been discovered in the earth. 
There is reason to believe that other germs infectious to human 
beings may have their abiding-place in the ground ; certainly no 
one doubts that the malarial germ lives there. 

Of great interest to physicians is the behavior of typhoid and 
of cholera bacteria in the ground. As has already been intima- 
ted, the ground is regarded by Pettenkofer and his school as the 
principal breeding-place of these micro-organisms outside of the 
body. This view, however, is not supported by bacteriological in- 
vestigations. Inasmuch as the cholera and the typhoid bacilli may 
multiply on various vegetable substrata and substances derived 
from animals, at temperatures often present in the ground, it is 
evident that here and there conditions may be present for their 
growth in the ground, but this growth is likely to be soon inter- 
rupted by the invasion of ordinary saprophytic organisms and 
other harmful influences. The typhoid bacilli are more hardy in 
resisting these invaders than are the cholera bacteria, which easily 
succumb, but even for the former, so far as our present knowledge 
extends, the ground can rarely serve as a favorable breeding-place. 
4 It is not, however, necessary that these organisms should 
multiply in order to infect for a considerable time the ground ; 
it is sufficient if their vitality is preserved. A.S to this latter point, 
the reports of different investigators are not altogether concord- 
ant. Such excellent observers as Koch, Kitasato, and Uffelman 
found that the cholera bacteria when added to faeces, or a mixture 


of faeces and urine, rapidly diminished in number, and at the end 
of three or four days at the most, had wholly disappeared. In a 
mixture of the intestinal contents from a cholera corpse with 
earth and water, Koch found numerous cholera bacteria at the end 
of three days, but none at the end of five days. On the other 
hand, Gruber reports the detection of cholera bacteria in cholera 
dejecta fifteen days old. The weight of bacteriological evidence, 
therefore, is opposed to the supposition that the bacteria of Asiatic 
cholera preserve their vitality for any considerable time in the 
ground or in the excreta. 

With respect to the bacilli which cause typhoid fever, it has 
been shown by Uffelman that these may live in faeces, mixture 
of faeces and urine, and mixture of garden earth, faeces, and urine 
for at least four and five months, and doubtless longer, although 
they may die at the end of a shorter period. He also finds that, 
under these apparently unfavorable conditions, some multiplica- 
tion of the bacilli may occur, although not to any considerable 
extent. Grancher and Deschamps found that typhoid bacilli may 
live in the soil for at least five months and a half. Unlike the 
cholera bacteria, therefore, the typhoid bacilli may exist for 
months in the ground, and in faecal matter holding their own 
against the growth of multitudes of saprophytes. This difference 
in the behavior of cholera and typhoid germs is in harmony with 
clinical experience. 

Manifold are the ways in which we may be brought into con- 
tact with infectious bacteria in the ground, either directly or in- 
directly by means of vegetables to which particles of earth are 
attached, by the intervention of domestic animals, by the medium 
of flies or other insects, and in a variety of other ways more or 
less apparent. 

An important, doubtless for some diseases the most important, 
medium of transportation of bacteria from an infected soil is the 
water which we drink or use for domestic purposes. It is not the 
subsoil water which is dangerous, for infectious like other bacte- 
ria cannot generally reach this in a living state, but the danger is 
from the surface water and from that which trickles through the 
upper layers of the ground, as well as from that which escapes 
from defective drains, cesspools, privy vaults, and wrongly con- 
structed sewers, or improper disposal of sewage. 


In view of the facts presented, there is no sufficient reason, 
from a bacteriological point of view, of rejecting the transmissi- 
bility of typhoid fever and cholera by the medium of the drink- 
ing water. This conclusion seems irrisistible when we call to 
mind that Koch once found the cholera bacteria in large num- 
bers in the water of a tank in India, and that the typhoid bacilli 
have been repeatedly found in drinking-water of localities where 
typhoid fever existed. Nor do I see how it was possible to inter- 
pret certain epidemiological facts in any other way than by as- 
suming that these diseases can be contracted from infected drink- 
ing-water, although I know that there are still high authorities who 
obstinately refuse to accept this interpretation of the facts. 

Pathogenic bacteria may preserve their vitality longer in ice 
than in unsterilized drinking-water. Thus Prudden found ty- 
phoid bacilli alive in ice after 103 days. 

Among the various agencies by which infectious organisms 
may gain access to the food may be mentioned the deposition of 
dust conveyed by the air, earth adhering to vegetables, water used 
in mixing with or in the preparation of food, in cleansing of dishes, 
cloths, etc., and contact in manifold other ways with infected 

Fortunately a very large part of our food is sterilized in the 
process of cooking shortly before it is partaken, so that the dan- 
ger of infection from this source is greatly diminished and comes 
into consideration only for uncooked or partly cooked food and 
for food which, although it may have been thoroughly sterilized 
by heat, is allowed to stand considerable time before it is used. 
Milk, in consequence of its extensive employment in an unsteril- 
ized state and of the excellent nutritive conditions which it pre- 
sents to many pathogenic bacteria, should be emphasized as 
especially liable to convey certain kinds of infection a fact sup- 
ported not less by bacteriological than by clinical observations. 
Hesse found that also a large number of ordinary articles of food 
prepared in the kitchen in the usual way for the table and then 
sterilized afford a good medium for the growth and preservation 
of typhoid and cholera bacteria, frequently without appreciable 
change in the appearance of the food. 

Upon solid articles of food bacteria may multiply in separate 
colonies, so that it may readily happen that only one or two of 


those who partake of the food eat the infected part, whereas with 
infected liquids, such as milk, the infection is more likely to be 
transmitted to a larger number of those who are exposed. 

In another important particular the food differs from the other 
sources of infection which we have considered. Not only the 
growth of infectious bacteria, but also that of bacteria incapable 
of multiplication within the body, may give rise in milk and other 
kinds of food to various ptomaines, products of fermentation, and 
other injurious substances which, when ingested, are likely to 
cause more or less severe intoxication or to render the alimentary 
tract more susceptible to the invasion and multiplication of in- 
fectious organisms. 

It is plain that the liability of infection from food will vary, 
according to locality and season. In some places and among 
some races the proportion of uncooked food used is much greater 
than in other places and among other races. In general, in sum- 
mer and in autumn the quantity of fruit and food ingested in the 
raw state is greater than at other seasons, and during the summer 
and autumn there is also greater danger from the transportation 
of disease germs from the ground in the form of dust, and the 
amount of liquids imbibed is greater. The elements of predis- 
position, according to place and time, upon which epidemiologists 
are so fond of laying stress, are not, therefore, absent from the 
source of infection now under consideration. 

I have thus far spoken only of the secondary infection of food 
by pathogenic micro-organisms, but, as is well known, the sub- 
stances used for food may be primarily infected. 

Chief in importance in this latter category are the various en- 
tozoa and other parasites which infest animals slaughtered for 
food. The dangers to mankind resulting from the diseases of 
animals form a separate theme which would require more time 
and space than this address affords for their proper consideration. 
I shall content myself on this occasion with only a brief reference 
to the infection from the milk and flesh of tuberculous cattle. 

It has been abundantly demonstrated by numerous experiments 
that the milk from tuberculous cows is capable, when ingested, of 
causing tuberculosis. The milk may be infectious not only in 
cases in which the udder is tuberculous, but also when the tuber- 
culous process is localized elsewhere. How serious is the danger 


may be seen from the statistics of Bollinger, who found with cows 
affected with extensive tuberculosis the milk infectious in eighty 
per cent, of the cases, in cows with moderate tuberculosis the 
milk infectious in sixty-six per cent, of the cases, and in cows with 
slight tuberculosis the milk infectious in thirty-three per cent, of 
the cases. Dilution of the infected milk with other milk or with 
water diminished, or in sufficient degree it removed, the dangers 
of infection. There is reason to believe that many of the so- 
called scrofulous affections in children are due to infection from 
milk derived from tuberculous cows. Probably for adults the 
danger of acquiring tuberculosis from the use of infected milk is 
relatively small. Bollinger estimates that at least five per cent, of 
the cows are tuberculous. From statistics furnished me by Mr. 
A. W. Clement. V. S., it appears that the number of tuberculous 
cows in Baltimore which are slaughtered is not less than three 
to four per cent. Among some breeds of cows tuberculosis is 
known to be much more prevalent than this. 

There is no evidence that the meat of tuberculous cattle con- 
tains tubercle bacilli in sufficient number to convey infection, 
unless it be very exceptionally. Nevertheless, one will not will- 
ingly consume meat from an animal known to be tuberculous. 
This instinctive repugnance, as well as the possibility of post- 
mortem infection of the meat in dressing the animal, seem good 
grounds for discarding such meat. The question, however, as to 
the rejection of meat of tuberculous animals has important eco- 
nomic bearings, and has not been satisfactorily settled. As to 
the propriety of the rejection of the milk from such animals, a 
matter, however, not easily controlled, there can be no difference 
of opinion. 

The practical measures to adopt in order to avoid infection 
from the food are for the most part sufficiently obvious. Still, it 
is not to be expected that every possibility of infection from this 
source will be avoided. The pleasure of living would be de- 
stroyed if one had his mind constantly upon escaping possible 
dangers of infection. It is difficult to discuss the matters con- 
sidered in this address without seeming to pose as an alarmist. 
But it is the superficial and half knowledge of these subjects 
which is most likely to exaggerate the dangers and awaken un- 
reasonable fears. While one will not, under ordinary circum- 


stances, refrain from eating raw fruit or food which is palatable, 
although it may not have been thoroughly sterilized by heat, or 
from using the natural water unboiled, in the fear that he may 
swallow typhoid or cholera bacteria, still in a locality infected 
with typhoid fever or cholera he will, if wise, not allow him- 
self the same freedom in these respects. Cow's milk, unless its 
source can be carefully controlled, when used as an habitual arti- 
cle of diet, as with infants, should be boiled, or the mixed milk of 
a number of cows should be selected ; but this latter precaution 
offers less protection than the former. 

In most places in this country we are sadly lacking in good 
sanitary inspection of the food, especially of the animal food 
offered for sale. One cannot visit the admirable slaughter 
house in Berlin or that in Munich, and doubtless similar ones 
are to be found elsewhere, and watch the intelligent and 
skilled inspection of the slaughtered animals without being im- 
pressed with our deficiency in this respect. In large cities an 
essential condition for the efficient sanitary inspection of animal 
food is that there should be only a few places, and preferably 
only one place, where animals are permitted to be slaughtered. 
Well-trained veterinarians should be selected for much of the 
work of inspection. 


The following valuable paper was read last year by Dr. H. 
Franklin Parsons before the British Medical Association at 
Leeds. It is deserving very careful attention. 

By disinfection I mean the destruction of infection the de- 
stroying of the activity of that matter which, produced by a sick 
person and received into the system of a healthy one, has the power 
of causing in the latter a disease similar to that from which the 
former was suffering. In popular language the word disinfection 
is used to include the use of substances (" deodorants ") which 
destroy offensive odors, and " antiseptics " which prevent or retard 
putrefaction, but I shall employ it in its strict etymological sense. 

What, then, is the nature of this infective matter which in the 
interests of the public health we seek to destroy ? It is known 
that it is organic matter, and particulate that is, solid, not liquid 


nor gaseous matter, although the fine colorless particles of which 
it is composed may be freely suspended in both water and air. 
There is reason also to believe that it is in all cases living matter, 
and consists of microscopic vegetable organisms. The analogy 
between the life history of infectious fevers and that of the yeast 
plant in a saccharine solution long ago suggested to Liebig this view 
a view embodied in the term " zymotic," often applied to such 
diseases. Modern research has shown that certain diseases in men 
and animals are undoubtedly caused by the presence in the system 
of micro-organisms, and are communicable by the inoculation of 
such organisms. Among these I may mention two acute febrile 
diseases namely, anthrax and relapsing fever ; acute suppuration 
and various forms of septicaema ; the chronic diseases, tuberculo- 
sis and leprosy ; also fowl cholera and infectious pneumo-enteritis 
of the pig, " swine fever." The last-named disease has an inter- 
esting resemblance to the common human infectious disorders, 
in that the contagium may be transmitted through the air, and 
attaches itself to places in which the affected animals are kept. 
In other diseases, as Asiatic cholera, scarlatina, diphtheria, and 
enteric fever, certain micro-organisms have been found and have 
been looked upon with more or less probability as the cause of 
the disease ; but the connection is not, perhaps, as yet com- 
pletely established, mainly owing to the difficulty of testing it by 
the results of inoculations on animals. In other infectious 
diseases, again, as small-pox, measles, and whooping-cough, no 
such organisms have, I believe, as yet been identified, but we may 
probably, for our present purpose, without much risk of error, 
assume the materies morbi in these also to be a living organism. 
This assumption furnishes us with a practical means of test- 
ing the efficacy of the agents we employ to destroy infection. 
It is in most cases not practicable to test directly the effect of 
our disinfecting agents upon the contagia of the ordinary infec- 
tious diseases of mankind, for the reason that we cannot 
make the necessary experiments (including control experi- 
ments with undisinfected portions of material) upon human 
beings ; and these diseases cannot, or cannot with certainty, be 
produced by inoculation in the lower animals. If, however, we 
choose the most refractory organism, pathogenic to animals, that 
we can find, and ascertain how it may be killed, we shall be tol- 


erably safe in assuming that the same means will kill the contagia 
of the infectious diseases of mankind, with which as sanitarians 
we have to do. Now certain of the pathogenic micro-organisms, 
bacilli, have the property of forming spores, and these spores 
are found to be more resistant than the fully developed organism, 
just as a grain of wheat will survive treatment, such as drying 
and dipping in poisonous solutions, which would kill a growing 
wheat plant. Of the pathogenic microbes, the most convenient 
for the purpose of testing disinfecting agents, is the bacillus an- 
thracis ; it forms, under certain circumstances, spores which are 
exceedingly tenacious of life ; it can be cultivated, and is easily 
recognized both by its microscopic character and its appearance 
when growing ; and, if inoculated into animals, it produces in 
them with certainty the disease known as anthrax. None of the 
ordinary infectious diseases of mankind are known to be caused 
by spore-bearing microbes (though it is possible that small-pox, 
the contagium of which is very tenacious of life, may turn out to 
be so) ; and so far as our present knowledge and experience go, 
we may assume that means which will destroy the spores of the 
bacillus anthracis may be relied on as efficacious for our purpose, 
though it does not follow that agents which do not destroy the 
bacillus anthracis are, therefore, useless against the less-resisting 
contagia of other diseases. 

An extensive and important series of researches upon the effi- 
cacy of disinfectants, conducted by Koch and his coadjutors for 
the German Imperial Board of Health, is in large part the founda- 
tion of our modern knowledge on the subject, though his results 
have been confirmed and extended by other workers, as Dr. 
Klein in this country, and a committee of the American Medical 
Association in the United States. Koch employed both spore- 
bearing and non-spore-bearing organisms of several kinds. 
Threads steeped in cultures of these were exposed to the ac- 
tion of disinfectants and tested by cultivation or by inoculation 
on animals. The general result of the experiments with chemical 
agents was to show the comparative or entire inertness as germi- 
cides of many of the substances commonly considered disinfec- 
tants. Carbolic acid was found to have a powerful restraining 
effect upon the growth of bacteria, but was much less efficacious 
in destroying their vitality. To kill spore-bearing forms it was 


necessary to steep them for one or two days in a five per cent, 
watery solution ; a two per cent, solution only killed them at the 
end of a week ; while a one per cent, solution did not kill them 
in fifteen days. Solutions of carbolic acid in alcohol or oil had 
not the smallest disinfecting effect ; five per cent solutions did 
not kill spore-bearing bacilli however long they were exposed to 
their action. Vapor of carbolic acid at ordinary temperatures 
had no destructive effect on spore-bearing bacilli, though some 
effect was produced at elevated temperatures. In other cases 
also it was found that the disinfecting effect of substances in the 
form of vapor was increased by elevation of temperature ; thus 
spores of bacilli in garden earth were killed in two hours by ex- 
posure at a temperature of 176 F. to the vapor of bisulphide of 
carbon, although neither a temperature of 176 in dry air nor the 
vapor of bisulphide of carbon in equal concentration at ordinary 
temperatures had any destructive action at all on them. 

Sulphurous acid gas was found efficacious for the destruction 
of non-spore-bearing organisms. Exposure to i part in 100 of 
air killed micrococci, if dry, in twenty minutes ; if moist, in one 
minute. Spore-bearing forms, however, were not killed, even 
after four days' exposure to a 6 per cent, gaseous mixture of sul- 
phurous acid in air. Chloride of zinc had no disinfecting effect ; 
spores of anthrax bacillus, which had remained for a month in a 
5 per cent, solution, were in no way affected. Absolute alcohol, 
glycerin, chloroform, sulphates of copper, zinc, alumina, and iron 
(5 per cent, watery solutions), and boracic acid (5 per cent.) were 
not found to have any destructive effect on the spores of bacillus 
anthracis. These spores were, however, destroyed by exposure 
for one day to the action in watery solution of either of the fol- 
lowing substances, namely : chlorine, bromine (2 per cent.), 
iodine, corrosive sublimate (i per cent.), permanganate of potas- 
sium (5 per cent.), and osmic acid (i per cent.) They were also 
destroyed after longer periods by the following substances, 
namely : ether, oil of turpentine, hydrochloric acid, chloride of 
iron (5 per cent.), arsenious acid (i per cent.), chloride of lime 
(5 per cent.), and quinine (i per cent.). 

Experimenting with heat in the dry form, Koch found that 
bacteria, free from spores, could not withstand an exposure of an 
hour and a half to a temperature of a little over 212 F. in hot air, 


but that spores of bacilli were only destroyed by remaining three 
hours in hot air at 284. He also found that in hot air the tem- 
perature penetrated so slowly that, after three or four hours' 
heating at 284, articles such as small bundles of clothes and 
pillows were not disinfected, and that by heat of this degree 
and duration most textile materials were more or less injured. 
The results with steam were strikingly superior. It was found 
that an exposure of five minutes to steam at 212 was sufficient 
to kill the spores of the bacillus anthracis, and that the penetra- 
tion of heat into articles exposed to steam took place far more 
rapidly than into the same articles exposed to hot air. 

A series of experiments made by Dr. Kline and myself on dis- 
infection by heat, confirm, .on the whole, the results of Koch. 
The materials experimented with were spore-bearing cultures of 
anthrax bacillus, anthrax blood free from spores, bacilli of swine 
fever, and tuberculous pus ; and the results were tested by inocu- 
lation on animals. Our results were more favorable to the efficacy 
of dry heat than those of Koch. We found that spores of bacil- 
lus anthracis were killed by exposure for four hours to a temper- 
ature between 212 and 216 F., or for one hour to 245. Non- 
spore-bearing bacilli were rendered inert by one hour's exposure 
to 212 to 218. Anthrax spores were killed by boiling for one 
minute in water, or by exposure for more than five minutes to 
steam at 212. We also found steam heat to penetrate far more 
rapidly than dry heat. Similar results have been obtained by 
other observers, so that the superiority of steam over hot air as a 
disinfectant may be looked upon as thoroughly established. 
With a view to ascertain whether the advantages of steam could 
be obtained while avoiding certain inconveniences in its use, we 
made some experiments with hot moist air, but the result was 
that, while the moistening of the air aided the penetration of 
heat, it did not, up to the point of one third saturation, render it 
more effectual in killing bacilli than dry air. 

Burning, of course, is a very thorough means of disinfection. 

It is characteristic of the class of infectious diseases that the 
morbid poison which produces any such disease multiplies in the 
body of the patient, and is given off again from it, and that it 
continues thus to propagate itself for a considerable period often 
for several weeks. The poison is believed to be especially given 


off from the part of the body upon which its local effects are 
manifested, as from the skin in small-pox ; from the skin and 
throat, and perhaps the kidneys, in scarlet fever ; in discharges 
from the throat and nostrils in diphtheria ; and from the bowels 
in enteric fever and cholera. There is reason to think, also, that 
the contagia of some at least of these diseases can multiply in 
suitable media outside the body, as in milk, sewage, soiled linen, 
or moist sewage-contaminated soil ; perhaps, also, even in potable 
water. On the other hand, some of the pathogenic organisms are 
found to perish as putrefaction advances, either through the for- 
mation by them of chemical compounds antagonistic to their own 
life, or through the competition of the ordinary putrefactive 
forms, just as in a neglected garden the exotic flowers are choked 
or stifled by the ranker growth of the indigenous weeds. 

Contagia are not as a rule permanently destroyed by cold, 
though that of yellow fever is so. They also in general are able 
to survive drying, though Koch states that drying is fatal to the 
comma bacillus which he finds in Asiatic cholera. 

The matters which may act as carriers of infection, and may 
thus require disinfection, are : i. The body of the patient, living 
or dead. 2. The discharges given off from the body of the 
patient, and more particularly those from the organs specially 
affected by the disease for example the exfoliating scarf skin in 
small-pox and scarlet fever ; the discharges from the throat and 
nostrils in scarlet fever and diphtheria, and those from the bowels 
in enteric fever and cholera. 3. The air tainted with exhalations 
from the sick, the poison probably existing therein in the form of 
suspended particles. 4. The clothes, bedding, and other articles 
used by the sick. 5. Articles of food, as milk and water. 6. 
Walls, floors, etc., of dwellings occupied by the sick, especially 
dust and dirt lodging upon the walls, and dirt accumulating in 
the cracks of the floor. 7. Collections of filth, as sewage, espe- 
cially in a stagnant state or deposited in or encrusting the sides 
of foul drains ; foul ground surfaces, and subsoil. 

The processes of disinfection applicable to the living body, 
such as baths, inunctions, lotions, and dressings, come within the 
province of curative medicine and surgery rather than that of 
public health. 

For the prevention of the spread of infection from the corpses 


of persons who have died of infectious diseases, the means usually 
employed are enclosure in a more or less air-tight coffin with 
chloride of lime or charcoal, and early burial, and I do not think 
that any thing more is necessary. I have never found any reason 
to think that a body lying undisturbed, surrounded by plenty of 
earth of a suitable nature, is a danger to the public health. The 
advocates of cremation refer to the observations of Pasteur that 
cattle grazing in a field in which the bodies of others that have 
died of anthrax have been buried have contracted the disease ; 
and that the spores of the bacillus anthracis are found in the 
superficial mould over the graves, being brought to the surface 
by earth-worms ; but, as I have mentioned, the spores of the 
anthrax bacillus are exceptionally tenacious of life. 

It is not of much use attempting to disinfect the infected air 
of sick-rooms by chemical means, for active chemicals, if present 
in sufficient quantity to be effective as disinfectants, would ren- 
der the air irrespirable. It is easier to get rid of it, and let its 
place be taken by fresh air. The contagia of most infectious 
diseases appear to be destroyed when freely diluted with fresh 
air. The poison of typhus fever is notably so, but that of small- 
pox does not appear to be, as Mr. Power has shown that small- 
pox may be disseminated through the air for considerable 
distances around a hospital in which many cases of that disease 
are under treatment. To avoid this it has been proposed that 
instead of ventilating small-pox wards into the open air, the air 
from them should be extracted through a flue and burnt in a fur- 
nace ; or I might suggest that a steam-blast might be used to extract 
the air and disinfect it at the same time. A recent invention for 
ventilating sewers uses a circle of gas burners for creating an up 
current of air, and passes the extracted air through the flames 
with a view to disinfect it. The offensive, and possibly infected, 
vapors from refuse-destructors and the caldrons used in bone- 
boiling and similar trades are best destroyed by passing them 
through a furnace. 

For the disinfection of the discharges of the sick, chemical 
agents must, as a rule, be used, though the discharges from the 
throat and nostrils in diphtheria and scarlatina are best received 
upon pieces of rag and burnt. It is of prime importance that 
infectious discharges should be disinfected immediately on being 


passed from the body, both because delay will give them more 
opportunity of causing mischief, and also because if the infected 
matter be mixed with a large quantity of other organic matters, 
as in a drain or privy, before the disinfectant is applied, the 
action of the latter will have to be exerted on a greater mass of 
material, and its effect will be pro tanto weakened ; and the 
chances will also be great that portions of the infective material 
will escape its action. It is thought by some that germs of en- 
teric fever, for instance, may long lurk unsuspected in defective 
drains and privies until some accidental circumstance, such as 
disturbance of the contents, brings them into activity, and that 
many of the " sporadic " cases of this disease thus arise. 

Of chemical disinfectants for the disinfection of excreta, cor- 
rosive sublimate is probably the most trustworthy and suitable 
for ordinary use. In its use, however, three precautions have 
to be borne in mind. i. It is very poisonous, and hence, in order 
to avoid accidents (such as frequently occur with carbolic acid), 
the solution should be colored, as with permanganate of potas- 
sium, sulphate of copper, or aniline blue. 2. It corrodes iron 
and other common metals and is instantly decomposed by con- 
tact with them, hence it must be used in non-metallic vessels. 
3. It forms with albumen an inert insoluble compound, but 
this may be prevented by acidulating the solution. A solution 
suitable for disinfection of excreta, clothing, etc., is made by 
dissolving \ ounce of corrosive sublimate with i ounce of 
hydrochloric acid and 5 grains of aniline blue in 3 gallons of 

Chloride of lime is a useful disinfectant for excreta, but too 
strong a solution injures clothing. Carbolic acid is especially an 
antiseptic, retarding putrefaction, for example, in sewage, but a 
5 per cent, solution is recommended by Koch by preference 
for disinfecting excreta and soiled linen of cholera patients. 
Creolin, a substance allied to carbolic acid, is said by recent 
experimenters to exceed it in destructive action upon spores of 
bacilli, at the same time that it is not poisonous to human 
beings. Permanganate of potassium is an excellent deodorant, 
and has the advantage of not being poisonous. It is also, to 
some extent, a true disinfectant, but its action upon infective 
matter is much weakened when this is mixed with a quantity of 


other organic matter. Green copperas (ferrous sulphate) is a 
cheap deodorant, but, according to Koch, is not a disinfectant 
proper. Its habitual use for flushing sewers in time of cholera 
was strongly recommended by Dr. Budd, and was said at Bristol 
to have produced excellent results. 

With regard to the disinfection of clothing, bedding, etc., used 
by the sick, it may, in the first place, be pointed out, that for 
such articles as will stand it boiling in water for, say, five minutes 
is an effectual means of disinfection. And, since the infectious 
matters are not actually incorporated with the fibres of the fabric, 
but merely attached as dirt to their outside, there is reason to 
think that even a thorough ordinary washing will be a sufficient 
disinfection, so far as the articles themselves are concerned ; but 
the infectious properties are transferred to the water in which 
they have been washed. The dangerous properties of such water 
are shown by the frequency with which cholera is contracted by 
those who wash the linen of cholera patients, and by cases like 
that at Mosely, recorded by Dr. Ballard, where an outbreak of 
enteric fever ocurred among the persons drinking the water from 
a well into which had percolated the soapsuds in which the soiled 
linen of an enteric fever patient had been washed. To avoid 
such risks it is necessary that infected articles which are washa- 
ble should be disinfected before being washed. This should, for 
obvious reasons, be done immediately on their being left off. 
Boiling might be used for this purpose, but boiling water in 
sufficient quantity is not always at hand ; and again, if soiled 
clothes are boiled, the coagulation of albuminous matters fixes 
stains in them and spoils their color. Hence it is more con- 
venient to put the clothes to steep in some chemical disinfecting 
solution, of which a panful should be kept in readiness. A solu- 
tion of corrosive sublimate is the best for this purpose, as, 
besides being the most effective, it has the advantage that it does 
not change or rot the linen. When the grosser dirt has been 
removed by rinsing in water, the articles may be boiled. 

Articles which cannot be boiled in water without injury, such 
as cloth clothes, blankets, and beds, are best disinfected by 
exposure to heat, and the experiments which I have quoted show 
that for this purpose a steam heat is preferable to dry heat for 
several reasons, especially because a lower temperature and a 


shorter exposure suffice to kill infective organisms, and because 
a steam heat penetrates much more rapidly than a dry heat into 
bulky and badly conductive articles. Further advantages are 
that in a steam apparatus the temperature is approximately 
equal in all parts ; that it can be accurately ascertained, and 
kept constant at any required degree for any length of time con- 
ditions which are essential to a good apparatus, but which are 
very difficult to obtain where dry heat is employed. Of dry heat 
apparatus known to me, Dr. Ransom's self-regulating gas disin- 
fecting stove is the only one in which these conditions are suc- 
cessfully complied with. In several kinds of disinfecting ovens 
frequently used I found a wide difference, sometimes as much as 
100 F., between the temperatures in different parts of the heated 
chamber ; and the thermometer used to indicate the temperature 
did not do so by a wide interval, again, sometimes by as much 
as 100. Also in ovens heated by coal or coke it is difficult to 
regulate the temperature so as to keep it near the required point. 
The result of such defects is apt to be either clothes are scorched 
and spoiled, or that, on the other hand, with a view to avoid this 
they are so insufficiently heated as not to be thoroughly disin- 

With care and in a suitable apparatus most articles can be sub- 
mitted to either dry or steam heat without serious injury, but 
leather is instantly destroyed by steam. Books, in these days of 
free libraries, sometimes need to be disinfected ; it may be done 
by exposing them to dry heat, the covers being held back so as to 
open out the leaves and allow the heat to penetrate. Steam is 
inadmissable, as it would soften the glue and destroy the leather. 
Letters may be disinfected by heat, but the effect upon sealing- 
wax and of steam in loosening the gum of envelopes must be re- 

A process suitable for the disinfection of rags and paper and 
shoddy mills is a great desideratum ; the requisites being that it 
shall be cheap, rapid, and effectual, and applicable to rags in the 
bale without unpacking. An American process attempted to do 
this by forcing steam into the bale through hollow screws ; but 
it was found that the heat was not uniformly distributed. The 
infection from which rag-pickers incur the most danger is that of 
small-pox, the contagium of which is the most persistent of any 


of the common infectious diseases, though I could quote cases 
which show that the contagia of scarlet fever and diphtheria 
may retain their activity a long time in articles that are kept shut 
up and not exposed to the air. Outbreaks of small-pox occur 
from time to time among workers both in linen and cotton, and 
in woollen rags, but are most frequent at paper mills where the 
best writing paper is made, the reason being that such paper is 
made from white linen rags, the remains of the articles that have 
come into close contact with human bodies. Unfortunately there 
are no means of recognizing infected rags except by their effects, 
which are not manifested until too late for preventive measures 
to be of any use. It. is not practical to insist on the disinfection 
of all rags, and it is not possible to say which rags ought to be 
disinfected and which it is not necessary to disinfect. Fortu- 
nately, against small-pox the only disease from which rag- 
workers incur risk they have in re-vaccination an effectual 

As regards disinfection of food, no one would, I presume, 
willingly eat or drink articles that he knew to be infected. As, 
however, one cannot always guarantee the absence of infection 
in the viands we eat or the water or milk that we drink, it is 
satisfactory to know that boiling or thorough cooking may be 
trusted to secure complete disinfection. In the experiments 
I have quoted it was found even that the very refractory 
spore-bearing bacilli of anthrax were destroyed by one minute's 
boiling in water at 212 F., though certain non-pathogenic bacilli 
found in vegetables and milk require for sterilization a higher 
temperature or more prolonged boiling, a fact familiar to the 
housekeeper who makes jam. It is doubtless owing to the efficiency 
of cooking as a disinfectant that sanitarians in France and Ger- 
many, where milk is, I believe, always boiled before use, are 
sceptical as to the possibility of propagation of infectious disease 
by that medium ; whereas with us in England, where milk is 
drunk raw, epidemics of milk origin are a matter of almost every- 
day experience. On the other hand, trichinosis, so common 
among the Germans, who eat the ham raw, that it has to be 
guarded against by an elaborate system of microscopic examina- 
tion of all slaughtered swine, is practically unknown as a human 
disease in England and France, where meat is always cooked. 


The case of the Welbeck outbreak in 1880, investigated by the 
president of our section, in which a number of persons were 
seized with acute specific diarrhoea after eating cooked ham at 
an auction, may at first sight appear to disprove the efficacy of 
cooking, as the disease was proved to be caused by a spore-bear- 
ing bacillus which was present both in the raw ham and in that 
which had been cooked. The explanation, however, is probably 
that the cooking had not b~een sufficient, of which there was evi- 
dence ; but that the cooking had not been without effect was 
shown by the fact that experiments made by feeding animals 
with portions of raw ham were more uniformly successful than 
those with the cooked ham. It is to be borne in mind that 
any bacteria left undestroyed would in time reinfect the whole 
material, and also that a chemical poison produced by the bacteria 
would not necessarily be destroyed by a degree of heat sufficient 
to kill the bacteria themselves. A series of cases of " pork-pie 
poisoning" at Retford, investigated by Mr. Spear in 1887, which 
presented similar features to the Welbeck outbreak, was found to 
be caused by a bacillus developing in the pies after cooking. 
It was found by Dr. Klein that exposure for one moment to a 
temperature of 153.5 was sufficient to kill the bacillus ; but ex- 
posure for twenty minutes to a temperature falling from 143.6 
to 136.4 did not do so. 

For house disinfection, fumigation with sulphurous acid or 
chlorine gas, the latter preferred, followed by thorough cleansing 
and scrubbing, removal of wall-paper, and lime-washing, are to 
be recommended ; but these processes, to be effectual, need to 
be carried out with more thoroughness than is frequently done. 
A difficulty often met with is to know where the inmates are to go 
while the house is being disinfected ; and it would be useful for 
this and other purposes if sanitary authorities had power to pro- 
vide refuges for people whom, although not themselves sick, it 
might be desirable to remove from their homes. 


The following brief reference to micro-organisms that seem 
to effect a useful purpose in the economy of nature appeared 
in an organ of the druggists and pharmacists : 


Since the time when Pollender discovered certain micro- 
organisms in the blood of animals affected with anthrax, scientists 
have been busy in biological and physiological research, with a 
view of establishing a relation between each disease and some 
specific bacterium present during that disease. 

As a result of these painstaking researches we have a bacillus 
designated as the producing cause of cholera, another as that of 
typhoid, while the bacillus butyricus, the streptococcus pyogenes, 
and the mycoderma aceti are as well known to biologists, and 
almost as readily recognized by them, as are the more familiar 
plants by the well-versed botanist. 

As an offset to this vast array of malign micro-organisms, 
Weibel has announced the discovery of " putrescence vibrios," 
which may be termed benignant bacteria. These micro-organ- 
isms, according to his observations, play an important part in 
destroying the more offensive products of putrefactive change. 

In this connection it might be well to note the following fact 
as stated some time since by Smart : " The bacteria of putrefac- 
tion elaborate, as products of their vital action, organic substances 
which are destructive to the organism which determined their 
formation." E. and H. Salkowski some years since separated 
two of these products, phenyl-propionic and phenyl-acetic acids, 
while the fact that carbolic acid is a product of putrefaction has 
long been known. Nor is the power of these substances confined 
exclusively to the micro-organism of which they are the product 
for Klein showed, some four years since, that they were fatal to 
other micro-organisms as well, though not always so to the spores 
of these bodies. 

While we have not the full report of Weibel at hand, it seems 
probable that at least a portion of the beneficent action ascribed 
to his benignant bacteria is due to this elaboration of self- 
poisoning material on the part of the bacteria of putrescence. 

Dr. Stieff reviews the experiments and writings of those who 
have shown that such substances as phenol, indol, skatol, and 
kreosol, found in the urine, are really products, in the healthy 
individual, of decomposition going on in the intestine under the 


action of the micro-organisms of putrefaction. In individuals in 
whom there is some putrefactive process taking place elsewhere 
in the body, owing to some pathological condition, these sub- 
stances will appear in the urine in excess. There will also be a 
similar increase when the absorption from the intestine of the 
normal products of digestion is insufficient or interrupted. He 
next discusses the experiments which have been made to deter- 
mine whether the introduction of antiseptic materials into the 
intestine would not interfere with the decomposition of albumi- 
nous bodies there. As he does not regard the results of these 
experiments as conclusive, and as it is important to possess some 
substance which has this power of checking putrefaction in the 
bowel, he himself undertook some investigations on the subject, 
performed on a series of patients in Gerhardt's clinic. The drugs 
employed were calomel and camphor, and careful analyses were 
made of the urine while they were being given. The experi- 
ments he details fully, and sums up the results in the following 
conclusions : i. Calomel, given in doses of five grains three 
times a day, exhibited no disinfecting power in conditions of 
increased decomposition in the intestine. 2. Consequently it 
can scarcely be recommended for the purpose of checking putre- 
faction in the intestine on account of the large dose which would 
need to be employed. 3. Camphor appears to possess a slight 
restraining power on putrefaction, since, in two cases, doses of 
five grains three times a day produced a diminution of the intesti- 
nal decomposition. 4. This action of camphor does not appear 
at once, and is only distinct after two or three days. The 
American Journal of the Medical Sciences, December, 1889. 


In 1874 Paget called attention to a chronic affection, apparently 
eczematous, of the skin of the mamma and aureola, which is 
almost always followed by cancer of the breast. The numerous 
authors who have since published such cases enumerate as char- 
acteristics of the eruption which distinguish it from common 
eczema : its limitation by a well-defined line, the parched indu- 
ration of the skin, the absolute incurability, and finally and espe- 
cially the complication, after a shorter or longer period, by a 


cancer. Histological examinations by Bultlin, Fhin, Duhring, 
and others did not explain the nature of the affection, which 
some have since regarded as an eczema which extended to the 
milk channels, and others as an unknown disease sui generis. 
Darier thinks that the following facts will render it possible to 
understand the peculiarities as yet unexplained of this type of 

If some of the scales are taken from the diseased surface and 
dissolved in water or in a solution of iodide, whether directly or 
after maceration in diluted ammonia or bichromate of ammonia, 
small round bodies, surrounded by a refracting membrane with 
double contour, are at once discovered among the epithelium 
cells and often in their interior. These bodies have a diameter 
which is larger than that of the cells or equally large ; their mem- 
branes contain a mass of protoplasm or of more or less numer- 
ous corpuscles. These bodies are always found in sections or 
fragments of the excised skin, in all the layers of the epidermis, 
and especially in the glandular prolongations of the epidermis. 
The character of these bodies admits the conclusion that we have 
to do with psorospermae or coccidix. They are present in all 
stages of evolution ; a mass of protoplasm, at first naked, sub- 
sequently surrounded by a membrane, divides itself later on into 
numerous granules enclosed in a cyst. 

The epithelioma of the breast contains similar parasites, and 
also a large number of elements which cannot with certainty be 
distinguished from epithelial cells, but which are often enclosed 
in other cells. Bultlin, who saw this in 1876, thought it an in- 
stance of endogenesis. The parasites are probably more numer- 
ous than they appear to be. That they play a part in the forma- 
tion of the tumor seems probable, since there is in each lobe a 
certain number of coccidix in their characteristic form. 

It is a well-known fact that the presence of these organisms in 
the tissue of the epithelium produces a budding and extension 
of it. M. Albarran quite recently exhibited epithelioma con- 
taining coccidix, and further demonstrations of this kind will soon 
be quite numerous. It is therefore, logical to suppose that the 
parasites which produce the epidermic lesion in Paget's disease 
of the nipples, cause also the epithelial growth of the milk chan- 
nels which constitute the epithelioma. 


The above facts appear important from different standpoints. 
Paget's disease of the nipple is a parasitical affection ; its diag- 
nosis becomes easy by microscopical examination of scales such 
as Darier made in four cases. Then, also, this disease furnishes 
a first indication of the nature and the pathogeny of certain epi- 
theliomas. La Semaine Mtdicale, 1889. 


There are various forms of this fever, but those where the 
symptoms return on the third day (tertian ague) and the 
fourth day (quartan) are the most important. Dr. Golgi 
finds that both are the result of microbes. 

" In the tertian form," he says, " the organism enters the red 
blood-corpuscles, and then goes through certain stages of de- 
velopment, which, in regard to succession one upon another, 
and in regard to symptoms, appear with unchangeable regularity. 
As soon as the infection has taken place, and the typical 
clinical forms of tertian fever have developed, there is always 
positive proof forthcoming of a characteristic condition, whether 
before or during or after the fever attacks. With numerous 
preparations and drawings Golgi describes the various phases 
of development, and the different species of parasites in simple 
tertian fever. He also explains the observations he has made 
in clinical cases of mixed fevers. Thus, in the blood of a 
patient with treble quartan fever there were three distinct gen- 
erations of parasites, which came to maturity always one after 
another, day by day. The examination of the blood was 
confirmed by the regular succession of a violent, a medium, 
and a very slight attack. As to their biological properties, 
the parasites of the tertian fever are thus distinguished from 
those of the quartan fever : i. By the completion of their 
development-cycle in two instead of three days, as in quartan 
fever. 2. By the different character of the amoeboid movements, 
which are more active in tertian fever. 3. By the relation of the 
parasite to the red blood-corpuscle that harbors it. While in 
quartan fever the substance of the attacked blood-corpuscles 
maintains its characteristic yellowish-green color until the last 


phase of distinction, the action of the parasite of the tertian fever, 
on the other hand, is very early discerned, the blood-corpuscles 
losing their color, even when the parasites occupy as yet but a 
small portion of them. This rapid decoloration appears to be 
connected with the rapidity with which the parasite sends out its 
protoplasmic shoots into all parts of the blood-corpuscle even 
to its periphery. In respect of their morphological properties, 
too, the two kinds of parasites differ, i. The protoplasm of the 
quartan-fever parasite has a much finer appearance. This is 
chiefly observable in the early phases of development of each 
kind. 2. In quartan fever the pigment appears in form of 
thicker grains and bacilli, which in tertian fever are of extreme 
delicacy. 3. The process of separation differs in an extraordinary 
degree in the two kinds of parasites. According to Golgi's views 
the numerous varieties of intermittent malarial fevers are simply 
varieties or combinations of the two chief types the tertian and 
quartan fever." 


Dr. Verneuil's conclusions as to the presence and influence of 
pathogenic microbes in tumors are as follows : Tissue of new 
formation of a malignant character, such as cancer, sarcoma, 
epithelioma, may at a given moment contain different microbes, 
of which neither the origin, kind, nor quantity can be accurately 
determined. The presence of these microbes may for a long 
time be innocuous, but, on the other hand, in some cases results 
in the rapid increase in softening and ulceration of the tumor. 
Microbes are not found in lipoma, fibroma, nor in cancers and 
sarcomas characterized by an initial slow development, but are 
almost always detected in softened and ulcerated tissue. These 
microbes, besides exercising a morbid influence on the surround- 
ing tissues, affect also the general economy, and constitute a 
febrile element. During excision of the morbid growth, they are 
communicated to other parts of the wound, and are capable of 
provoking septicasmia, which may prove fatal. The British Med- 
ical Journal. 

Dr. Saymonne, says the London Medical Record of September 
28th, claims to have isolated a bacillus, called by him " bacillus 


crinivorax," which is the cause of alopecia. It is, he says, found 
only on the scalp of man, other hirsute parts of the body and also 
the fur of animals being free from it. The bacilli invade the hair 
follicles and make the hair very brittle, so that they break off to 
the skin. Then the roots themselves are attacked. If the mi- 
crobes can be destroyed early in the disease, the vitality of the 
hairs may be preserved, but after the follicles are invaded and all 
their structures injured, the baldness is incurable. The follow- 
ing is Dr. Saymonne's remedy to prevent baldness : Ten parts 
crude cod-liver oil, ten parts of the expressed juice of onions, 
and five parts of mucilage or the yolk of an egg are thoroughly 
shaken together and the mixture applied to the scalp, and well 
rubbed in, once a week. This, he asserts, will certainly bring 
back the hair if the roots are not already destroyed ; but the ap- 
plication of the remedy must be very distressing to the patient's 
friends and neighbors, and in my practice it would not be 
necessary, since all microbes would assuredly be destroyed by the 
Microbe Killer, which is neither injurious nor unpleasant. W.R. 


Last year the French Academy of Medicine appointed a 
commission to investigate tuberculosis in man and other 
animals, and to report on the danger of using tuberculous 
milk and meat as food, and also the dangers, if any, of the 
spread of the disease by infection. 

The commission was a most able one, being composed of the 
following : Drs. Chauveau, Butel, Cornil, Grancher, Landouzy, 
Lannelongue, Legroux, Leblanc, Nocard, Rosignol, Ver- 
neuil, Villemin, and Petit. The report was received and ap- 
proved by Drs. Bouchard, Brouardel, Potain, and Proust, all 
members of the Congress on Tuberculosis. Their report is 
as follows : 

I. Of all diseases tuberculosis claims, both in city and country, 
the largest number of victims. In 1884, a year chosen at hazard, 
for example, there were 56,970 deaths in Paris, and of these about 
15,500 over a quarter died of tuberculosis. Pulmonary 
phthisis is not the only manifestation of tuberculosis, as is gener- 


ally thought by the public. Physicians have discovered that 
many diseases may be due to tuberculosis, among others, bron- 
chitis, colds, pleurisy, scrofula, meningitis, peritonitis, enteritis, 
tumors, osseous and articular lesions, cold abscesses, etc. All 
these may be directly caused by tuberculosis, and their ultimate 
prognosis is no more hopeful than that of phthisis pulmonalis. 

II. Tuberculosis is a parasitic, virulent, contagious, and trans- 
missible disease, caused by a microbe the bacillus of Koch. This 
microbe can penetrate into the organism either through the 
digestive tract by means of food or through the lungs by means 
of the inspired air, or through the skin and mucous membrane by 
means of abrasions, punctures, wounds, or ulcerations. Certain 
diseases, such as measles, small-pox, chronic bronchitis, and 
pneumonia, and certain constitutional conditions, due to diabetes, 
alcoholism, syphilis, etc., greatly predispose the contraction of 
tuberculosis. The causes of tuberculosis being known, the pre- 
cautions taken to prevent the entrance of the germs into the body 
are capable of preventing its propagation. We have an encour- 
aging example in the results obtained in typhoid fever, in which 
the epidemics diminish in all towns where the necessary measures 
are taken to prevent the typhoid germ from mingling with the 

III. The parasite of tuberculosis may be found in the milk, 
muscles, and blood of animals which serve as food for man (ox, 
cow especially, rabbit, poultry). Raw meat or underdone meat 
and blood being capable of containing the living germ of tuber- 
culosis, should be prohibited. Milk, for the same reason, should 
only be consumed after having been boiled. 

IV. Owing to the danger arising from milk, the protection of 
young children, who are peculiarly predisposed to the contraction 
of tuberculosis (over two thousand children under the age of two 
years dying annually of tuberculosis in Paris alone) should spe- 
cially demand attention of both mothers and nurses. The ideal 
food for the infant is the milk of a healthy woman. The tuber- 
culous mother must not nurse her child, but should confide it to 
the care of a healthy nurse, living in the country, where, under the 
best hygienic conditions, the risks of contagion from tuberculosis 
are much less than in town. The child thus brought up will have 
the best chance of escaping tuberculosis. 


If nursing at the breast is impossible, the infant may be fed 
artificially upon cow's milk by means of the bottle or spoon ; the 
milk must, however, always be boiled. Unboiled milk of asses 
and goats is infinitely less dangerous. 

V. Owing to the dangers arising from the meat of slaughtered 
animals, which may preserve all the appearances of health even 
when tuberculous, the public has every interest in being assured 
that the inspection of meats, as required by the law, is being 
properly and generally practised. The only certain method of 
avoiding the danger of meat coming from tuberculous animals, is 
to cook it to such an extent that the interior portions are as well 
done as the surface. Only thoroughly roasted, boiled, or fried 
meat is entirely devoid of danger. 

VI. On the other hand, the germ of tuberculosis may be trans- 
mitted from the human tuberculous subject to the healthy human 
subject, by means of the sputa, pus, dried mucous discharges, and 
all objects laden with tuberculous dust ; it is necessary, therefore, 
in order to insure security from the transmission of tuberculosis, 
to : 

1. Be known, that the sputa of phthisical subjects is the most 
formidable agent of transmission of tuberculosis ; there is danger 
to the public in discharging the sputa upon the earth, carpets, 
hangings, curtains, napkins, handkerchiefs, clothes, and coverings. 

2. Be it well understood, that the use of spittoons should be 
imposed everywhere and by every one. These spittoons should 
be daily emptied into the fire, and well washed with boiling 
water. They should never be emptied upon dust-heaps or in 
the garden, where they might lead to the infection of poultry, or in 

3. Never sleep in the bed of a tuberculous subject ; to occupy 
his room as little as possible ; but, above all, do not allow young 
children to sleep there. 

4. Remove from places or dwellings inhabited by tuberculous 
subjects all persons who may be considered as predisposed to the 
disease ; the children born of tuberculous parents, those having 
had measles, small-pox, pneumonia, repeated attacks of bron- 
chitis, or suffering from diabetes, etc. 

5. Not to use articles which possibly may have been contami- 
nated by phthisical patients (linen, bedding, clothing, articles of 



toilet, hangings, furniture, toys) except after thorough disinfec- 
tion (high-pressure steam, boiling, sulphur vapors, or lime- 

6. Insure that the rooms of hotels, furnished apartments, cot- 
tages, or villas occupied by phthisical patients in watering places 
or winter resorts, are furnished and carpeted in such a manner as 
to render them capable of undergoing easy and thorough disinfec- 
tion after the departure of each patient. It would be better if 
such rooms had neither curtains, carpets, nor hangings, but were 
washed with lime and the floor covered with linoleum. It is of 
the highest importance to the public that they should prefer the 
hotels in which such indispensable hygienic precautions and 
measures for disinfection are thoroughly carried out. 

Dr. Dujardin-Beaumetz, in the discussion which followed 
the reading of the above report, said that on the whole he 
approved of the report of the commission, but he must 
remind them that it was a mistake to think that tuberculosis 
was more frequent in towns than in the country. Exactly 
the reverse is true. Further, some of the statements made 
by the commission were purely hypothetical and unsubstan- 
tiated by facts. Contagion by means of milk is absolutely 
exceptional. For this to take place, it would not only be 
necessary for the cow to be tuberculous, but also for her to 
be afflicted with tuberculous mammae. Again, the transmis- 
sion of tuberculosis by tuberculous meat had not been proven. 
However, we know that the microbe dies in a weakly acid 
solution ; hence the ingestion of tuberculous meat cannot be 
dangerous, since the contents of the stomach are acid. 

M. Ducemberg thought milk from a tuberculous cow most 

Dr. Germain Se"e remarked that the commission stated the 
possibility of the microbe entering the system through the 
air. This assumption he regarded as false. In the light set 
forth by the commission, tuberculosis would, indeed, be 
nothing else than a pest. Koch had demonstrated that the 
tubercle bacillus cannot live in the air. It can only live and 
reproduce itself in the organism. Regarding the use of spit- 


toons, he agreed with the commission. As long as the sputa 
is kept moist there is no danger, but when dry it is different. 
Regarding the infectivity of tuberculous milk, he agreed with 
Dujardin-Beaumetz. To carry out the views of the commis- 
sion as to the use of raw meat, he thought impossible. 
Were all meat cooked according to the requirements of the 
commission, little of it worth eating would be left. A tem- 
perature of 320 F. is necessary for the destruction of the 
bacilli. Meat is not eatable after having been subjected to 
a temperature much over 195 F. Moreover, it has been 
conclusively proved that the consumption of tuberculous 
meat is devoid of danger. 

The further discussion of the report was, as we learn from 
the Medical News, adjourned to the next, meeting of the 


The following regulations were agreed upon a short time 
ago by the New York Board of Health, and a large number 
of copies was printed for general distribution, though but 
little heed was given to them. They are practical evidence, 
nevertheless, of the acknowledged soundness of my views : 

Pulmonary tuberculosis (consumption) is directly communi- 
cated from one person to another. The germ of the disease 
exists in the expectoration of persons afflicted with it. The 
following extract from the report of the pathologists of the 
Health Department explains the means by which the disease 
may be transmitted : 

" Tuberculosis is commonly produced in the lungs (which are 
the organs most frequently affected) by breathing air in which 
living germs are suspended as dust. The material which is 
coughed up, sometimes in large quantities, by persons suffering 
from consumption contains these germs, often in enormous 
numbers. . . . This material, when expectorated, frequently 
lodges in places where it dries, as on the street, floors, carpets, 
handkerchiefs, etc. After drying, in one way or another it is 
very apt to become pulverized and float in the air as dust." 


By observing the following rules, the danger of catching the 
disease will be reduced to a minimum : 

i. Do not permit persons suspected to have consumption to 
spit on the floor or on cloths, unless the latter be immediately 
burned. The spittle of persons suspected to have consumption 
should be caught in earthen or glass dishes containing the follow- 
ing solution : Corrosive sublimate, i part ; water, 1000 parts. 

Do not sleep in a room occupied by a person suspected of 
having consumption. The living-rooms of a consumptive patient 
should have as little furniture as practicable. Hangings should 
be especially avoided. The use of carpets, rugs, etc., ought 
always to be avoided. 

3. Do not fail to wash thoroughly the eating utensils of a 
person suspected of having consumption, as soon after eating as 
possible, using boiling water for the purpose. 

4. Do not mingle the unwashed clothing of consumptive 
patients with similar clothing of other persons. 

5. Do not fail to catch the bowel discharges of consumptive 
patients with diarrhoea in a vessel containing corrosive sublimate 
i part, water 1000 parts. 

6. Do not fail to consult the family physician regarding the 
social relations of persons suffering from suspected consumption. 

7. Do not permit mothers suspected of having consumption to 
nurse their offspring. 

8. Household pets (animals or birds) are quite susceptible to 
tuberculosis ; therefore do not expose them to persons afflicted 
with consumption ; also, do not keep, but destroy at once, all 
household pets suspected of having consumption, otherwise they 
may give it to human beings. 

9. Do not fail to cleanse thoroughly the floors, walls, and ceil- 
ings of the living- and sleeping-rooms of persons suffering from 
consumption at least once in two weeks. 


At a meeting of the New York State Medical Society held 

at Albany this year an interesting paper was read on the 

treatment of tuberculosis by Dr. Paul H. Kretzschmar, 

Supervisor-at-Large of Kings County. It will be found on 


perusal to be an endorsement of much that has been said in 
the earlier pages of this book. 

At the Congress of American physicians and surgeons held in 
Washington during September, 1888, writes Dr. Kretzschmar, 
one of the most prominent members of the profession from the 
city of New York made the statement that the time had come 
when pulmonary consumption should be classified among the 
contagious and infectious diseases, and consumptives should be 
cared for in like manner as small-pox patients are. At that time 
the writer entered his protest against any such proposition, but 
so much has been said since regarding the probability of trans- 
mitting the disease from the patient to the healthy that a 
discussion of this very important subject seems to be advan- 
tageous. The fact that the International Congress for Tuber- 
culosis, which will meet in Paris this year, has, among other sub- 
jects, the question of " Isolation," on its programme, is evidence 
that a portion of the medical profession does seriously consider 
the advisability of such a proposition. Since Dr. Koch first 
demonstrated the specific cause of tuberculosis, it has been 
asserted that consumptives are a source of danger to 
their surroundings, and it has been claimed that many 
cases of pulmonary tuberculosis are directly traceable to 
infection by contact only. As long as one hundred years 
ago the theory, now preached by many that consumptives are 
liable to infect healthy persons by contact only, was accepted 
as a fact and appropriate laws were issued. In Naples a law 
existed during the latter part of last century, for over fifty years, 
compelling the attending physician to report every case of 
pulmonary consumption (Tulcera pulmonale), and the fine for the 
first failure to comply with this law was 300 ducats, to be followed, 
in case of repeated neglect to report this class of cases, by ex- 
pulsion from the country for a period of ten years. All poor 
consumptives were at once removed to a hospital ; the clothes 
and bedding belonging to consumptive patients had to be de- 
stroyed after death ; the dwellings of all patients who were 
fortunate enough to die outside of the hospital had to be entirely 
renovated, and nobody was allowed to occupy them until one 
year afterward. Similar laws and restrictions were in force in 
Portugal, without, however, influencing the prevalence of pul- 


monary consumption in any marked degree. Rigorous laws, 
strictly enforced for fifty-six years, would certainly have shown 
some favorable results, if isolation and public supervision of con- 
sumptives were of any practical value whatsoever. In a paper 
read before the American Public Health Association at its meet- 
ing in October last the writer used the following language : " If 
the advocator of isolation would reflect for a moment and con- 
sider the hardship and injury which would follow its introduc- 
tion, affecting, as it would, a large portion of the human race and 
seriously interfering with our entire social life, without giving the 
slightest assurance of better results than those obtained after 
many years of trial in Naples and Portugal, one would think that 
they would hesitate to advocate so inhuman a proposition. It 
will not be denied by them that a very large proportion of con- 
sumptives are phthisical subjects long before they themselves are 
aware of it, and even physicians frequently treat alveolar catarrh 
as bronchitis until the microscope demonstrates the fact that the 
patient's expectorations are full of tubercular bacilli. What 
benefit would be derived by isolating advanced cases of pulmonary 
consumption, if cases during the early stages are permitted to de- 
posit millions of microbes with their expectorations upon our 
streets, in our churches, public halls, railroads, and all over their 
own residences ? And finally, what advantage would it be to 
have isolation enforced in the State of New York and not in 
New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and other neighboring States, or if 
adopted in the United States and not in Canada?" Careful 
consideration of the subject has strengthened the writer's former 
opinion about the infeasibility, cruelty, and absurdity of any 
attempt to carry into practical effect the teachings of those ad- 
vocating isolation of consumptives for the purpose of diminishing 
or destroying the danger of infection, although it is admitted 
that, theoretically, the isolation of all consumptives would do 
much to lessen the quantity of tubercular bacilli floating in the 
air and thereby the danger of infection. Practically, the same 
favorable results would be obtained if the lessons taught by Dr. 
George Cornet's experiments should be made the basis for proper 
teachings regarding the expectorations not only of people known 
to be consumptives, but of all persons suffering from prolonged 
coughing depending, apparently, upon other deranged con- 


ditions of the human system. We know that the source of con- 
tagion is contained in the sputa ; we also know that as long as 
these expectorations remain in a moist state they are not apt to 
infect anybody, but that the dry sputa, becoming pulverized, 
allowing the poisonous germs to be carried away into the sur- 
rounding atmosphere are alone responsible for the dissemination 
of the disease. The short pamphlet issued by the Board of 
Health of the city of New York regarding this matter gives most 
excellent instructions, and it seems to the writer to be an act 
of vital importance for this society to do its share that these 
instructions, or others of a similar character, be published by 
every health officer or by every county society of this State. To 
obtain the views of the most advanced phthiso-therapeutists the 
writer entered into correspondence with some of them. Dr. Her- 
mann Weber, of London, England, writes, under date of Jan- 
uary 2, 1890 : "In answer to your note I beg to say that it 
would not only be a great cruelty to isolate consumptive patients, 
but it would also be an impossibility." Dr. P. Dettweiler's 
answer is dated Naples, December 24, 1889, and reads : " Re- 
garding the effect of isolating consumptives, I can only say, 
most minute cleanliness, the rigorous use of the spittoon, and the 
general introduction of the blue flask are the best means to pre- 
vent the spreading of the disease ; isolation is unnecessary." 
Dr. Ernest Meissen, of Falkenstein, Germany, writes, December 
19, 1889, as follows : "The isolation of consumptives is cruel, 
not practical, and unnecessary." Dr. Cornet's investigations have 
proved the latter. Every possible effort should be made, of 
course, to destroy the dangerous tubercle bacilli, and thanks to 
Cornet we are now in a position to do that much more effectually 
than formerly. The term " intelligent spitting " does not sound 
pleasant, but these two words express best what will do most 
to diminish the number of the germs, producing pulmonary con- 
sumption, floating in the air which we breathe. If in hospitals 
and private practice sufficient attention would be given to this 
most important matter, great progress would be made toward low- 
ering the death-rate from pulmonary consumption. It is our most 
solemn duty as physicians to see to it that the public is not only 
duly instructed about the value of intelligent spitting, but also 
that it is carried into practice. The blue flask referred to by my 


friend Dr. Dettweiler is intended for use among consumptives ; it 
has been devised by him and was exhibited at the last medical 
congress of German physicians, held at Wiesbaden in April, 1889. 
The writer fully appreciates the importance of Dr. Dettweiler's 
invention and takes pleasure in presenting the blue flask to you 
for your inspection and consideration. There may be room for 
improvement in the make-up of the flask, but the principle in- 
volved in its use is of the greatest magnitude, and it is to be 
hoped that the lesson which its use teaches will be carried 
by you into every household where consumption exists, and that 
the patients will be so thoroughly impressed with its importance 
that spittoons partly filled with appropriate fluid and frequently 
cleaned will soon be found in every room, and that patients will 
know what to do to relieve their friends of the danger of becoming 
infected by their carelessness. Permit me, at this time, to digress 
for one moment from the subject under consideration to pay a 
well-earned tribute of gratitude and admiration to the memory of 
the late Dr. Hermann Brehmer, of Goerbersdorf. He died just 
before my letter, asking for his opinion regarding the isolation, 
reached Goerbersdorf. The medical profession loses, by his 
death, one of its brightest stars, and those especially interested 
in the subject of phthisis-otherapy their foremost teacher, writer, 
and active practical worker. For over thirty-five years Dr. 
Brehmer conducted his now world-renowned institute for the 
cure of consumpives in Goerbersdorf. Beginning with almost no 
capital and upon the smallest scale, his institution has grown to a 
most marvellous extent, and more than fourteen thousand patients 
have visited it during the last three decades. Of Dr. Brehmer's 
writings the most important are: " Chronic Pulmonary Consump- 
tion and Tuberculosis of the Lungs its Cause and Cure," 
published in 1857 ; "Etiology of Chronic Pulmonary Consump- 
tion," 1885; "The Treatment of Chronic Pulmonary Con- 
sumption," 1886 ; second edition, enlarged, 1889 ; and his latest 
work, " Communications from Dr. Brehmer's Institution for the 
Cure of Consumptives in Goebersdorf," 1889. Strongly opposed 
to isolation of consumptives for the purpose of diminishing the 
spread of the disease the writer is one of the most enthusiastic 
advocates of the separation of consumptives from the healthy, 
and their removal to institutions, properly located and conducted, 
and conducted solely for the cure of this class of patients. 



Professor Sommerbrodt, says the Medical Press in a recent 
issue, is an enthusiastic believer in the special virtues of creasote 
in phthisis and pulmonary tuberculosis. After an extensive use 
of the drug he gives us statistics of five thousand cases he has 
treated in hospital. He claims for it the power of improving the 
appetite, limiting the secretions, and diminishing the irritable 
cough. Its primary virtue, however, is its anti-bacterian prop- 
erty, which checks the progress of the baneful disorder. He 
supports his belief by pointing to Guttman's bacterian experi- 
ments with the tubercular bacilli, which he cultivated in glycerine 
and destroyed with a 1:4,000 solution of creasote. From this 
experiment Guttman himself reasoned that, if he could get this 
quantity into the circulation without injury to the organism, he 
might be able to arrest the progress of the bacilli ; but when he 
considered that a man of 60 kilos. (160 pounds) contained 4,615 
grammes of blood (9 pounds), that would mean upward of one 
gramme of creasote to be present in the circulation before any 
good effect could be expected. 

This again bears out my view. There are several antisep- 
tics and drugs that destroy micro-organisms, and creasote, 
like corrosive sublimate, is among the most powerful, but it 
cannot be used in sufficient quantities, as I have explained 
elsewhere, without destroying the patient. When the dis- 
ease has advanced to a stage where tissues are destroyed, the 
loss cannot under any circumstances be made good, but the 
disease may be checked if the microbes are destroyed, and to 
accomplish that the whole of the tissues must be permeated, 
as they may be with the Microbe Killer. W. R. 


A correspondent of the New York Herald, writing from 
Paris, said recently : 

Microbiological researches are one of the leading preoccu- 
pations of the scientific period in which we are now living. 
The incessant publications to which they give rise are there 
to witness that this study has not lost any of its popularity 


among those who take pleasure in penetrating into the territory 
of the infinitely small. A Russian savant, M. Metchnikoff, has 
recently been studying the role that animal cells take as regard 
the microbes in the organism. In his opinion this role is essen- 
tially a defensive one, and the cells are charged with a function, 
phagocytosis, which leads toward an incessant destruction of the 
microbian species. According to this hypothesis, immunity, 
natural or acquired, is nothing but the result prepared before- 
hand of the individual influence wrought in this way by the cells. 
This is an ingenious theory, and one that deserves to take a 
certain rank, although it is not yet possible to foresee for it any 
proof either present or future. 

Another question very closely related to this one is that of the 
action that the blood has on microbes. It appears that this influ- 
ence is a reality, and that it is a distinctive one as regards certain 
varieties of bacteria, but it only manifests itself under certain 
conditions. It reaches its maximum when the blood is fresh, and 
disappears entirely when it is in an opposite condition ; it also 
disappears when the blood has been heated to a temperature of 
55 degrees C. 

Of the two constituent elements of the blood, plasma or 
globules, which can claim this action ? Some very precise 
experiments authorize us to pronounce in favor of the plasma- 
Besides, it seems highly probable that this destructive action is 
more particularly the attribute of a substance belonging to the 
class of diastases, and which enters into the composition of this 

However this may be, the established antagonism between the 
blood and the microbes appears to have a certain importance in 
connection with general pathology, for we are warranted in believ- 
ing that this beneficial action of the blood manifests itself in 
many different circumstances by supplying the organism with 
means that enable it to fight until the invading microbes are 
completely destroyed, or, at any rate, until they are finally illu- 
minated (urinary crisis). These methods of indirect struggle 
might be considered as similar, although on a large scale, to 
those which medical therapeutics is constantly using ; and we 
may conclude that if the plasma, or liquid portion of the blood, 
is a destructive agent of the microbes, or if, at least, it paralyzes 


their development, therapeutics should have as its principal aim 
the rendering of the blood plasma, or, better still, of the blood, 
sufficiently rich and active to insure that the result of the conflict 
between the microbes and it may not be disastrous. 

The richer and more active the blood the greater the chances 
of its overpowering the microbes which may penetrate into the 
organism, and of destroying them. 


It may reasonably be questioned whether much good, if 
any, is done by discussing the nature of disease and the 
properties of drugs in the daily newspapers. The too com- 
mon use by the people of -agents like cocaine, antipyrine, 
and others has been largely due to that form of publishing 
information respecting them. Such information must neces- 
sarily be limited, and certainly people are unwise to dose 
themselves with dangerous poisons, or to use them in any 
way without the advice of some one who is legally responsi- 
ble and presumably competent to advise. 

But sometimes it is possible to pick out of the lay journals 
notes from men of science which are not without merit. Of 
such, the following is worthy of quotation here, it having 
appeared in the Paris edition of the New York Herald. The 
writer says : 

Mr. Inglis Parsons, physician to Chelsea Hospital, London, is 
a particularly energetic opponent of the theory of a microbian 
origin of cancer. In his opinion, all the cells of our organism 
possess, but in a latent form, the power of multiplying their num- 
ber in an abnormal way, and of producing unshapely growths 
of creating new tissues, in a word. But in our normal condition 
this power does not manifest its existence unless the above-men- 
tioned cells are acted on by some wound or form of irritation. 
But, in such cases as these, the action of the nervous system 
intervenes ; it does so to regulate the formation of new tissue, 
and to make it pass through its process of development in a 
normal fashion. 

But if, for some reason or other, the nervous system is not 


capable of fulfilling this regulating function, the cells acquire an 
independent existence, and can construct abnormal tissues such 
as cancers. 

According to this theory, then, cancer is a derivative of the 
normal cells of our organism, but of cells which have eluded the 
restraining action of the nervous system. This is nothing but 
pure hypothesis, and has nothing in its favor but the frequency 
of the occurrence of cancer in persons whose nervous system is 

This theory, it is easy to see, is a great way removed from the 
doctrine of the microbian origin of cancer. But this idea is 
not at all calculated to discourage us ; quite the contrary, for it 
will be readily understood that, if we could succeed in finding 
some means of bringing the cells that are being irritated back 
into the power of the nervous system by stimulating its action, 
we might be able to prevent their abnormal development, or, at 
any rate, to keep it within moderate bounds. 

This should give fresh courage to investigators. It is certain 
that the task is not easy, and that the goal is a long way off, but 
it is not possible to admit that a disease which causes such rav- 
ages among mankind will continue much longer to be such a 
mystery both as to its cause and as to its treatment. However 
strange and startling may seem the theories that are in vogue at 
the present day about the cause of cancer, it is the physician's 
duty to examine them all, and to carry out experiments whereby 
their value may be tested. There will be no means of succeeding 
but this, and it is safe to say that, with the wonderful impetus 
that has been given to science in our times, nothing will be 
impossible from now on. 

This question of the origin of cancer is so absorbing, since the 
course of action to be followed in treating this disheartening 
disease depends on its solution, that I thought it would interest 
the readers of the Herald to know what is thought about it by 
one of the most distinguished histologists of Paris, Dr. Brault, 
Chef de Laboratoire & la Faculte* de Paris, me'decin des hdpitaux ; 
and I give below the memorandum which Dr. Brault has drawn 
up for me on the subject in reply to my request. 

M. Brault's ideas are very suggestive, and come from a man 
whose competence in such matters is considerable. If the writer 


gives no definite conclusions, or, rather, if he ends his article 
without any practical deductions, at leasthe emits the ingenious 
theory that cancerous cells may take the part of of microbes, and 
that the defensive reaction which takes place in viscera that are 
invaded by them may be directed against these cancerous cells. 

Consequently, the adversaries of the microbian theory of 
cancer, whatever may be the hypothesis they uphold, seem to 
foresee a means of our protecting ourselves against this disease. 
According to this idea, after a long period of despair and aban- 
don, we are now about to enter into a new phase that of hope. 


" There is, at the present moment, a tendency to believe that 
tumors, and particularly those which are termed cancers, are 
caused by some parasitic action similar to that observed in the 
various infectious diseases. On what basis is this supposition 
founded ? Simply on this fact, that it is proved that tumors, in 
spreading, follow the natural channels of the circulation, and 
that they are found in the depths of the substance of viscera that 
are far removed from the primitive seat of the neoplasm. 

" This fact cannot be denied, but does it follow that the inter- 
pretation usually made of it is a correct one ? We think not.- In 
an article published several years ago in the Archives Gtntrales 
de Mtdecine of 1885, 'On the Non-Bacterian Origin of Carci- 
noma,' we opposed the idea that has since been defended by 
Scheurlen and Rapin as to this supposed role of the bacteria. 
We say supposed role, as the publications of the writers we have 
just cited contain no direct proof in support of their theory. 
In our mtmoire, after having compared the way in which the 
evolution of microbian diseases is accomplished to the develop- 
ment of tumors, we ended by the conclusion that these two forms 
of pathblogical disorders are in constant opposition from the 
beginning of their existence to the end. 

" Let us see what the distinctive characteristics are of these two 
forms of disease, considered in their simplest form. In infec- 
tious diseases the parasites give rise in the viscera to inflamma- 
tion, temporary or prolonged temporary in typhoid fever and 
in the greater part of suppurative complaints ; prolonged in 
tuberculosis, for instance. The end of these inflammations is 


marked by a more or less complete destruction of the viscera 
that are attacked. Notwithstanding this, restoration can take 
place and healing can be expected. In running over the long 
series of microbian diseases, it is easy to acquire the conviction 
that the entire energy of our organism is represented by the 
struggle between our tissues and the invading microbes. If the 
fight lasts on, the viscera become hardened by continued accu- 
mulation of materials destined to repair losses or to isolate the 
foreign body ; materials which are borrowed from the fibrous 
framework of the viscera. 

" But in cancers, on the other hand, what do we see ? On the 
surface of the mucous membranes, or in the interior part of the 
glands, we find the cells of which they are formed multiplying to 
such an extent that in a short time they spread beyond the limits 
of the mucous membranes, or of the walls of the glands. Then 
the cells, released from all restraint, insinuate themselves into 
every vacant space they find in their path, reach the vessels, and 
are carried away by the blood, or by the lymph, to invade the 
viscera or the ganglia. 

" This is by no means an hypothesis, but a fact, the truth 
of which has been proved, and can be readily checked by any 
one desiring to do so. In the new sppts which they have chosen 
for their abode, the cells that have been transplanted go to work 
and construct glandular tubes or flat surfaces of mucous cells, 
which have the most striking resemblance to the elements of the 
tissue that gave them birth. We draw special attention to these 
facts, as the entire discussion is based on them. We say it a 
second time what we find in secondary tumors of the liver, 
lungs, or whatever the organ may be, is by no means an agglom- 
eration of microbes, or bacteria, but cells, cells entirely similar to 
those of the pancreas, stomach, or skin, according to whether the 
pancreas, stomach, or skin was the seat of the primitive cancerous 

" The introduction of the microbian idea into the problem is 
certainly powerless to explain the transplantation of cells from 
one organ to another, and, besides this, the track followed by the 
elements that have been transplanted can sometimes be followed 
from their starting-point to their journey's end without a break 
in the chain. Nor can the role of the bacteria be a direct one, 


as microbes are unable to produce cellular elements differing 
from their own structure, and we know by the general law which 
governs the development of all beings that every cell springs 
from a cell of the same species as itself. 

" Quite the contrary. Whenever bacteria (vegetable cells) find 
themselves in the presence of the cells of man or of animals 
a conflict arises between the two, which can only end by the 
total destruction of the one by the other. There are but few ex- 
ceptions to this rule, and even they are more apparent than real, 
but it will not be possible for us to develop this point of the 
subject as it deserves. 

" The multiplication of cancerous cells in an organ situated at a 
distance from the organ that gave them birth, is always preceded 
by what might be termed a process of cellular grafting. The 
cells that have been transplanted on to a new spot develop at its 
expense, like any other form of parasites. Consequently in can- 
cerous tumors the only infecting and invading agents are the cells 
themselves. It is against them that the organ tries to defend 

" The question of the contagious character of cancer has been 
discussed latterly to a considerable extent, but the cases that 
have been published to prove the idea have so far been not at all 
conclusive, and it will be necessary to await future developments. 
Still, we must add in closing that, as a firm believer in the process 
of cellular grafting, we do not see a priori that any objection can 
be made to the idea of grafting by contact ; and it is our opinion, 
a fortiori, that some day the feasibility of inoculating cancer will 
be experimentally proved, particularly if care be taken to experi- 
ment with animals of one and the same species. 

" Me"decin des Hopitaux de Paris." 


The following article over the signature of the celebrated 
French experimenter appeared not long since in a New York 
paper, and it will repay perusal. In every thing connected 
with the immediate subject of his investigations M. Pasteur's 
opinions must have weight, and he entirely sustains me in 


my theory of the cause of disease. It would have been 
better if he had omitted the statement that the origin of life 
is outside the sphere of scientific inquiry, for in that he errs, 
and his views as to the origin of rabies do not require it. 
Says M. Pasteur: 

Rabies is a disease which has been known from the earliest 
times. The dog may give it to the man and to domestic animals. 
Animals, again, may communicate it to each other. At the time 
of writing this paper, rabies is raging in England in a herd of 
deer in the park of the Marquis of Bristol at Ickworth. The 
herd was composed of five hundred animals, and two hundred of 
them have died already, though the disease still rages. A rabid 
dog found the way into the .park during the month of April last, 
bit several animals, which died of rabies, but only after they had 
bitten a large number of their fellows. 

A short time ago our knowledge of this disease was still sur- 
rounded by many popular fallacies. Old writings, recent papers 
even, state that rabies may originate spontaneously, and the 
occasional causes producing the disease are likewise described. 
In the streets of certain towns one may see along the walls, in 
the summer-time, small tin vessels filled with water in order that 
dogs may satisfy their thirst. Many think that unless such pre- 
cautions are taken, some animals may become rabid. Neverthe- 
less it is a fact that, in whatever physiological or pathological 
conditions a dog or any other animal is placed, rabies never 
makes its appearance in that animal unless it has been bitten or 
licked by another suffering from rabies at the time the wound 
was inflicted. Every person who is of opinion that rabies may 
originate spontaneously an opinion I am even now fighting 
against will at once answer : " But there must have been, at 
some time or other, one first animal spontaneously afflicted with 
rabies." That answer simply opens up the whole question of the 
origin of things, a question which is altogether outside the domain 
of scientific investigations. Whence came the first man ? Whence 
came the first oak tree ? Nobody knows, and it is useless to dis- 
cuss such mysteries. Observation alone shows us that rabies 
never originates spontaneously. Nobody has ever proved the 
existence of spontaneous rabies, though many have attributed to 
it the symptoms of epilepsy, a disease frequently met with in the 


canine species. Further, it never breaks out in any country 
unless introduced there by an animal bitten in another place 
where rabies is endemic. Many islands in the Pacific Ocean are 
quite free from it. It is not met with in the wide Australian 
continent, Norway, or Lapland. And yet these countries will be 
free of it only as long as they take proper measures to prevent 
the introduction of dogs which, after being bitten in another 
country, carry the virus with them in a latent form. 

Moreover, it is not difficult to prove that rabies is a disease 
which cannot appear de novo under any physiological conditions, 
and that its spontaneous origin is quite impossible. We know 
nowadays that contagious or virulent affections are caused by 
small microscopic beings which are called microbes. The anthrax 
of cattle, the malignant pustule of man, are produced by microbes ; 
croup is produced by a microbe. The microbe of rabies has not 
been isolated as yet, but, judging by analogy, we must believe in 
its existence. To resume : every virus is a microbe. 

Although these beings are of infinite smallness, the conditions 
of their life and propagation are subject to the same general laws 
which regulate the birth and multiplication of the higher animal 
and vegetable beings. They, like the latter, never have a spon- 
taneous origin. Like the latter, they are derived from beings 
similar to themselves. It has been proved, without the shadow 
of a doubt, that, in the present state of science, the belief in 
spontaneous generation is a chimera. If it be said that life must 
have appeared on this earth spontaneously at some period or 
other, I must repeat the statement which I made just now, namely, 
that the origin of all things on earth is hidden behind an impene- 
trable veil. In short, rabies is not a spontaneous disease. 

As it is always due to the direct inoculation of its virus by a 
rabid animal, it is easy to understand that simple police measures 
will suffice to stamp out this horrible disease. Two or three 
years would perhaps be enough to eradicate it, if owners were 
compelled to muzzle their dogs, or to lead them by a string when 
in the streets. 

Everybody, medical men especially, agree in thinking that 
rabies, in man at least, is an incurable disease. If a man be bit- 
ten by a rabid animal in such a manner that he must necessarily 
die of rabies, his health may nevertheless remain perfectly good 


for several weeks, though the treacherous virus creeps on in his 
body, carried by the blood or finding its way along the nerves. 
Lastly, it invades the nervous centres. It is always found there 
first, and from thence it passes into the salivary glands. The 
first symptoms now make their appearance : fear of water and of 
all liquids, intense headaches, spasms of the throat, dilated pupils, 
haggard eyes, severe pain or mere itching at the seat of the bite. 
In rare cases the patient tries to bite ; if so, he bites the bed- 
clothes, but only seldom the people near him. He expectorates 
frequently, while convulsive movements follow on the slightest 
breath or draught of air. He is afraid of shining objects, and 
the slightest noise causes him to start. These are some of the 
striking signs of the disease. . If one or several of these morbid 
symptoms make their appearance, rabies has fairly begun, and, 
whatever may be done, it follows its own independent and fatal 
course. Death, sometimes preceded by horrible sufferings and 
by indescribable maniacal attacks of fury, shortly follows. 

Strange to say, this disease, on which all the resources of medi- 
cine have no effect, has been treated in all countries by an endless 
number of remedies, all supposed to be infallible. There is no 
country in Europe or America, be it small or large, in which per- 
sons are not to be found who are supposed to be able to cure 
rabies, or in which practices which are said to prevent the occur- 
rence of the disease may not be studied. Such erroneous beliefs 
are widely spread. The idea on which such practices are based 
is due to the fact that it is difficult for men in general to apply 
to their knowledge of facts, which are more or less mysterious in 
their nature, and the causation of which is unexplained, the 
precepts derived from experimental methods. The human mind 
is always struck by any thing which appears to be marvellous. A 
man, for instance, will often believe the quack who tells him that 
a stone of a certain kind, or a plant, will prevent the evil effects 
of a bite from a rabid animal, provided this stone or plant be 
merely placed in contact with the wound. He may say even that 
he has personally experienced the good effects of such a practice 
if rabies has not followed the application of the remedy to one 
patient. He forgets that to draw such a conclusion must neces- 
sarily be a mistake, simply because every bite from a rabid 
animal is not always followed by the breaking out of the disease 
in the person so bitten. 


Now, suppose a hundred people to have been bitten by rabid 
animals, how many will die of this terrible disease ? It is difficult 
to answer such a question. Moreover, the number of victims 
varies, for several reasons. Nevertheless, it is generally supposed 
that if the deaths taking place among a large number of persons 
bitten by rabid animals be added up, and if their seat and gravity 
be next taken into account, the mortality among persons bitten 
amounts to 15 to 20 per cent. In other words, more than eighty 
out of a hundred persons suffer no evil effects from the bite. It 
is easy, therefore, to be deceived as to the value of any preventive 
remedy. For if we apply it to a small number of persons it will 
seem to have been successful in four cases out of five. Is that 
not more than sufficient to warrant a quack, whose advice is 
taken, to say that his remedy is infallible, and to cause men to 
blindly share his belief ? 

The experimental method judges facts more severely. That 
method teaches us that if we are to believe in the efficacy of a 
preventive remedy against rabies among persons bitten by rabid 
animals, it would be necessary, in the first place, to discover a 
process enabling the experimenter to reproduce rabies in an 
animal at will. A number of dogs having, then, been inoculated 
with rabies according to that process, would then have to be 
divided into two batches, the remedy being applied to one batch, 
and the disease being allowed to run its course unopposed in the 
other until death followed. It would be easy to compare the 
course of the disease in the two lots, and the action of the remedy 
could thus be conclusively demonstrated, provided rabies and 
death did not follow on the introduction of the virus into animals 
treated by the remedy. We have tested in this way remedies 
which are supposed to be able to prevent the occurrence of 
rabies, but we have never obtained satisfactory results. 

It is not so easy as one might think at first to inoculate a series 
of animals with rabies successfully. We have already called 
attention to the fact that if dogs be bitten by rabid animals the 
disease does not appear in all of them. A direct subcutaneous 
inoculation of the saliva of a rabid dog is hardly more successful. 
The saliva contains, together with the microbe of hydrophobia, 
other microbes of different kinds, which may give rise to abscesses 
and other morbid complications, and thus prevent the occurrence 
of rabies. In short, only a few years ago experimenters would 


not have known where to find the virus in a pure state, nor to use 
it in such a way as to produce rabies, and nothing but rabies. 
Luckily, these two difficulties were solved at the same time by the 
following discovery : If the autopsy of an animal dead of rabies 
be made, and if a small portion of the brain, spinal cord, or, 
better perhaps, of the thicker part of the cord which unites this 
to the brain a part which is called medulla oblongata, or bulbous 
be taken, and if this portion of the central nervous system be 
crushed in a sterilized fluid, with all necessary antiseptic precau- 
tions, and if a small quantity of this fluid be now introduced on 
the surface of the brain of a chloroformed animal (dog, rabbit, or 
guinea-pig) by means of a hypodermic needle, after trephining, 
the animal thus inoculated will contract rabies to a certainty, and 
that in a relatively short time that is, in a period not exceeding 
fifteen days or three weeks. 

The method which I published before the Academic des 
Sciences de Paris on October 16, 1885, resembles in many of its 
general characteristics the method of prophylaxis against conta- 
gious diseases. These methods are based on the inoculation of 
attenuated virus. The injection of such attenuated virus inocu- 
lates animals, and thus enables them to resist the attack of the 
corresponding virus. 

Every virus, or rather all virulent and infectious microbes, may 
be attenuated by natural or artificial means. The virus of small- 
pox in man is represented in an attenuated condition by the 
cow-pox virus of bovine animals. The latter has been produced, 
I am inclined to think, by accidental and successive inoculations 
of human small-pox virus on the udders of cows, and its present 
state of virulence has at last become " fixed " 'there. In the same 
way the virus of rabies is greatly modified by successive inocula- 
tions on monkeys or rabbits. 

Similarly again, the fatal virus of anthrax is modified by the 
action of air and heat until at last it is thus rendered harmless. 
It passes through intermediate stages, however, in which it may 
still prove fatal to animals of small size, but harmless when 
inoculated into domestic animals, although it inoculates the latter 
against the attacks of the primitive fatal virus. In the same way 
the virus of rabies may be attenuated to any wished-for degree by 
the action of air and moderate heat ; and may then, when inocu- 



lated into animals, enable them to resist the action of the primitive 
fatal virus. In other words, one may produce in a dog a state in 
which it is impossible for that animal to contract rabies. Take a 
dozen dogs, inoculate them in the manner which I have just 
mentioned, and then inoculate them at the surface of the brain 
with the pure virus of rabies. Then perform the same operation 
at the same time on twelve other non-inoculated animals. Not 
one of the first dozen will contract the disease, but the twelve 
other animals will all die of it after exhibiting all the various 
symptoms typical of rabies, and it resembles in every particular 
that produced by the bite of a rabid animal wandering about the 
streets. The experiments which I have just mentioned, and 
which show that dogs may be inoculated against rabies, may be 
successfully repeated on other dogs, even if they have been 
bitten, before the inoculations are begun, by rabid animals, pro- 
vided too long a period between the time of the bite and that of 
the protective inoculations has not elapsed. The success of such 
a course of treatment depends on the usually long period of 
time intervening between the day of the bite and the time at 
which the first symptoms of rabies show themselves. The immu- 
nity due to inoculation is produced in animals before the epoch 
at which the acute symptoms of rabies ought to appear. This is 
indirectly but fully proved by the fact, that if the period of 
incubation in a dog be much shortened our method may not 
prove successful in inoculating that animal. If the virus be, for 
instance, inoculated at the surface of the brain, the disease often 
follows as early as two weeks after the inoculation. It is notice- 
able that in order to protect an animal efficiently under these 
conditions, the whole process of preventive inoculations must be 
carried on as quickly as possible if that animal is to be efficiently 
inoculated before the fatal symptoms of rabies appear on the 

Several years ago I brought together at Villeneuve 1'Etang 
.many dogs inoculated during the year 1884, and placed them in 
a large kennel. After having demonstrated the fact that in 1885 
and 1886 the larger number of these animals, though not all 
(eleven out of fourteen in 1885, four out of six in 1886), had not 
suffered any harm from the inoculation of the rage des rues (street 
rabies), even if the virus was deposited on the surface of the 


brain, I came to the conclusion that, after all, it was only neces- 
sary to know whether such inoculated animals would be able to 
resist the action of the virus when introduced by a bite. Accord- 
ingly, in 1887, 1888, and 1889, inoculated animals were merely 
bitten by dogs suffering from rabies, and not inoculated under the 
skull. In 1887 the inoculated dogs suffered no evil effects after 
being inoculated by the bite of a rabid dog. In 1888, five dogs 
inoculated in the year 1884 were bitten in the month of July, 
together with five non-inoculated animals. The five inoculated 
animals are now (August, 1889) still in perfect health, whereas of 
the five others three died of rabies and two are living now. At 
the time of writing (August, 1889) a similar experiment is in 
progress on another group of animals inoculated in 1884. If 
these animals resist^ and if all or part of the non-inoculated 
animals die of rabies, it will be a positive proof that the artificial 
immunity against fresh bites from rabid animals may extend over 
a period exceeding five years. However great the advances made 
in our knowledge of the etiology and prophylaxis of rabies among 
animals may have been, these results were interesting chiefly 
because they justified us more and more in hoping that the pre- 
ventive methods against rabies might be successful in the case 
of men bitten by rabid animals. But the question was how to 
summon up courage enough to make that trial and to overstep 
the frontier which separates man from animals. 

The following account is due to the pen of one who, in his 
official position of " son-in-law," has been present through all the 
phases of that period a period full of anguish and dreadful 
perplexities : 

"On July 4, 1885, at eight o'clock in the morning, Joseph 
Meister, nine years of age, the eldest son of a baker, living at 
Steige (Alsace), was going alone from that village to a neighbor- 
ing school at Meissengott. He was walking along an isolated 
path, a school-boy's path, when a dog rushed on him and threw 
him to the ground. The child did not try to offer any resist- 
ance, but covered his face with his arms. The dog bit him, 
rolled him over and over and worried him. A mason saw the 
scene from some distance off, and ran to the spot. Armed with 
an iron bar, he beat the dog over and over again until the animal 
ran away home only to throw itself on its owner. The owner, 


Theodore Vone, a grocer at Meissengott, took a gun and killed 
the dog. Foaming at the mouth, straw and pieces of wood in 
the stomach were there to show that the animal was presumably 

" The parents of little Meister thought at first that their son 
had been attacked by a vicious dog. The day was spent in 
washing and dressing the child's wounds. But in the evening, 
frightened at what she heard the accident the owner of the dog 
met with, the sudden determination of the owner to kill the dog 
with a shot from his gun the mother took her little boy Joseph 
to Dr. Weber at Voile 1 . Dr. Weber cauterized the wounds, 
although twelve hours had elapsed since the accident, and advised 
Mrs. Meister to start for Paris. 

" They came to the laboratory on Monday, July 6. M. Pas- 
teur was greatly distressed and affected, and, although fully con- 
vinced of the value of his last experiments, the idea of applying 
his method for the first time on that child caused him great 
anguish. He therefore went and told Dr. Vulpian and Dr. 
Grancher, professor at the Faculty of Medicine, his pupil and 
friend, of the situation he found himself face to face with. Dr. 
Vulpian and Dr. Grancher came at once and saw little Meister, 
and, both of them agreeing, advised M. Pasteur to try on the 
child, condemned to an almost certain death, the method which 
had always been successful when applied to dogs. 

"A shepherd from the Jura named Jean Baptiste Jupille 
came after little Meister. This boy had been bitten by a rabid 
dog, and arrived in order to undergo the preventive inoculations 
after six days had already elapsed since he had been wounded. 
M. Pasteur felt rather anxious on account of this delay of six 
days. But, although he carefully noted the difference between 
that space of time and the two days and a half which had elapsed 
from the time little Meister had been bitten to the beginning of 
the inoculations, M. Pasteur hoped 'that it was still possible to 
act. As rabies but rarely breaks out in man before a period of 
less than one month or six weeks after the bite, it appeared 
possible that the inoculations might have the time to fully 
exert their influence, and prevent the effects of the virus of 
rabies. It is really a question of speed. Rabies is, owing to the 
relative length of its period of incubation, like a parliamentary 


train, whereas 'the vaccin, on account of the large amount which 
is injected, passes it just like an express train passes a slow train, 
and, after it has once passed it, prevents the active virus from 
entering the human economy. Tout Paris followed with the 
greatest interest that second experiment on Jupille. In the press, 
in drawing-rooms, in cafes, even in the streets, everybody gave 
his opinion, sometimes enthusiastic, sometimes reserved, some- 
times hostile and even abusive, as to the degree of confidence 
which the newly announced method deserved. Like La Fon- 
taine's shepherd, who had been raised for one moment to the 
dignity of favorite, he left Paris 

" 'Comme I' on sortirait d'un songe* 

and went quietly back to Villers-Farlay. 

" Then bitten persons arrived from all quarters. Nobody 
could have believed that so many accidents could be due to 

" It was at this time, in the midst of this crowd of people com- 
ing to be inoculated, that, on November 9, 1885, a child ten 
years old, little Louise Pelletier, came to M. Pasteur, after 
having been bitten thirty-seven days before. A huge moun- 
tain dog had furiously attacked her at La Varenne Saint- 
Hilaire. Not only was there a wound in the armpit, but there 
was another deep one at the back of the head. * * * The 
case seemed hopeless. But had there been only one chance in a 
thousand to save this child it would have still been right to make 
a trial and apply the method. * * * The treatment had 
come to an end a few days before, and the child had returned to 
the lodgings of her parents in the Rue Dauphine, had gone back 
to the life of a hard-working school-girl, and one might almost 
have begun to hope she was safe, when the first symptoms of 
hydrophobia made their appearance. The child refused all 
fluids. The contractions of the throat allowed no liquids to 
pass. The spasms of suffocation choked her speech. One 
might have fancied one heard the last sobs which follow in the 
wake of a child's fits of anger. 

" In the morning of December zd, a period of calm appeared, 
which lasted eight hours. A struggle seemed to take place be- 
tween the disease and the preventive inoculations, which had 


been begun again and repeated every two hours. But the virus 
had already invaded the child too far. Rabies was too powerful. 
In the evening, the disease, attended by its horrors, hiccoughs, 
and hallucinations, made further progress. The unfortunate 
little one said she felt as if water was running all over her body. 
At times she did not recognize her father, taking him for a 
stranger ; then, noticing her mistake suddenly, she showered 
upon him her excuses and caresses. She kept calling for M. 
Pasteur, took his hands, saying to him : ' Stay near my bed ; I 
should be afraid if you went away ! Oh ! I am so glad to have 
you near me.' The words came by fits and starts from her pant- 
ing throat ; death was creeping over her eyes the great black eyes 
which anxiously watched you and during these awful hours the 
sister, who had been removed from the room, went on with her 
lessons brought from school, in the dining-room, by the light of a 

" On December 3d little Louise Pelletier died. There was at 
first a rebound in public opinion. From all parts of the horizon 
certain journalists, birds of evil omen, came running to the spot. 
They hoped that with the aid of this change of wind they would 
drown the discovery. Articles were flaunted about bearing as 
title, ' The Triumph of M. Pasteur.' Not only did they cry 
aloud that the method was a failure, but they even insinuated 
that the death of little Louise Pelletier was due not to the bites 
of the dog, but to the virus contained in the fluid used for inocu- 
lations. M. Pasteur was worse than a charlatan ; he was a mur- 
derer. The calumnies became more and more virulent. Just 
think ! To cause people to mistrust, to despise that discovery, 
to whisper into the ears of men who had felt a great patriotic joy 
and a great humane hope, this pessimistic conclusion : ' Well, it 
appears that all this is untrue.' That, for some people, would 
be a success indeed. These attacks were isolated, but on that 
account all the mere insolent. Did they succeed in preventing 
some people from coming to the laboratory ? They caused them 
to hesitate, at any rate. A Hungarian woman, bitten by a rabid 
dog, came immediately to Paris to be inoculated by M. Pasteur, 
but stayed there six days before she summoned up courage 
enough to knock at the laboratory door. When M. Pasteur asked 
her the cause of this delay, she answered in return : ' After I had 


read all I was made to read, I had no confidence any longer.' At 
the very moment that the departure from New York of four 
American children bitten by a rabid dog was announced, these 
philanthropic papers stated publicly that if the sad ending of 
little Louise Pelletier had been known in America, the parents 
would have spared the children a long and certainly useless jour- 
ney. They came, and went back cured, and hundreds of bitten 
people followed them." 


The Emperor Dom Pedro of Brazil forwarded to M. Pasteur, in 
a letter dated September 26, 1889, the statistics of the treatment 
of rabies from February 9, 1888, to September 15, 1889, at the 
Pasteur Institute of Rio Janeiro, which is under the management 
of Dr. Ferreira de Santos. 

The treatment by inoculation was applied to 162 persons, but 
from this number should be deducted : 

First, five persons very slightly bitten by animals that were 
hardly suspected, and who did not complete the course of 

Second, one person that died on the twenty-third day during 
the course of treatment. The important point in this case is that 
during these twenty-three days on ten occasions this patient failed 
to come to be inoculated. Three children who were bitten more 
than a year ago by the same dog were inoculated and are to-day 
in perfect health. 

Of the remaining 156 persons only one died, probably but not 
certainly from rabies. The death-rate is therefore 0.64 per cent. 


Dr. P. Muselier published in the Gazette Mtdicale de Paris 
a few months ago a re'sume' of the proceedings at the Pasteur 
Institute to that time which is interesting. 

The publication of the results obtained in the preventive treat- 
ment of rabies at the Institut Pasteur during the period extending 


from November, 1888, to November, 1889, produces an impres- 
sion quite as satisfactory as the one conveyed by the results ob- 
tained during the preceding years ; it seems to add an additional 
title to those which Pasteur's method has already won in the eyes 
of the public. This time again the death-rate following preven- 
tive inoculations does not go beyond a very low fraction thirteen 
deaths out of a total of 1,810 persons vaccinated, which represents 
a portion of .73 per cent. 

These figures call forth two remarks the first bearing on the 
number of deaths after treatment, and the manner in which it is 
progressively diminishing. This number is at present less than 
one per cent., whereas the mortality in cases of rabies that have 
not been treated reaches the enormous proportion of fifteen per 
cent. ; the second relative to this fact, that the mortality after 
inoculation is about identical whether the bites were inflicted by 
animals proved mad by experimentation or by animals in which 
rabies was simply suspected. 

It should be noted in passing that the latter remark authorizes 
us to think that the diagnosis of probable rabies in animals that 
inflict bites and then disappear without leaving any traces is, as a 
general thing, perfectly justified. 

It would seem from this fact that Pasteur's method has tri- 
umphed over all obstacles, and that its dazzling superiority is 
now established beyond the reach of any question. Nevertheless, 
we feel it our duty to admit the justness of certain criticisms, 
quite plausible in appearance, which have been made latterly, not 
so much against the method itself as against a too literal interpre- 
tation of the way in which it acts. 

In connection with three cases of rabies that had undergone 
treatment by M. Pasteur's inoculations M. Lancereaux recently 
published an article which seems to justify the restrictions to 
which we have just alluded. The victims, three boys, who had been 
bitten by the same dog, which was proved to have been mad, had 
gone through the course of preventive inoculation. Two of them 
felt no subsequent effects, the third died with all the symptoms of 

How can we explain these different results coming from an 
identical treatment applied to cases which appear to be likewise 
identical ? Are we to attribute the fatal termination of the first 


case to the fact that the wound had not been cauterized imme- 
diately after the accident, as had been done in the case of the 
other two boys ? or should we impute it to the depth of this 
wound, a circumstance which may well have facilitated the imme- 
diate penetration of the virus into one of the nervous fasciculi of 
the region, and its subsequent rapid conveyance toward the cere- 
bro-spinal centre ? It would be possible to argue as to the degree 
of probability of either of these hypotheses ; it cannot be denied 
that the case itself is unfavorable to Pasteur's method. Still, the 
treatment had been applied at an early date, in accordance with 
all the rules that is to say, under the circumstances calculated to 
assure success. 

M. Lancereaux calls attention to these peculiar difficulties of 
the interpretations. In his opinion, in estimating the value of 
these cases of failure we should take into consideration a number 
of factors, among which the depth of the wound and the direct 
contamination of a nerve fibre by the virus seem to hold the most 
important rank. He likewise thinks that we should also take 
account of the absence of cauterization after a bite. This precau- 
tion, which was formerly so strictly enforced, has fallen somewhat 
into discredit since Pasteur's discovery, but we must admit that 
facts such as those that we have mentioned above furnish in 
its favor an argument of indisputable value. 

Lastly, it is just to remark that reflections based on simple sta- 
tistics are not sufficient whereby to judge the value of the treat- 
ment ; it is necessary to examine closely each particular case, 
and then will be found causes for objections to which a satisfactory 
reply has yet to be found. 


Dr. Nicaise has recently directed attention to the import- 
ance of pure air in all cases of tuberculosis. 

A few years ago, it was thought that by increasing the cubic 
contents of the enclosed space in which a patient breathes, the 
desired result, an atmosphere of pure air, would be attained. 
But this procedure is insufficient. The air is still vitiated, and the 
solution of the problem lies in a continual renewing of the air. 


Our dwellings are not constructed on this principle. We are 
therefore obliged to effect this permanent aeration artificially. 
M. Nicaise, in speaking of the process of keeping a window 
partly open, reports the degrees of temperature that he noted 
during his sojourn on the shores of the Mediterranean, where he 
spent 106 days during the winter of 1888-9. 

His room was on the first floor, had one window and a south- 
western aspect. The sun entered it during the greater part of 
the day. The window was supplied with blinds, and the room 
contained fifty-three cubic metres. 

The comparative figures of the minimum temperature out-of- 
doors and in the room were the following : the mimimum tempera- 
ture out-of-doors ranged between 2 and 9 degrees centigrade 
above zero. The minimum temperature in the room varied be- 
tween 9^ and 15 degrees. Under these conditions, then, there 
is no risk in leaving a window partly open during the months of 
December, January, February, and March. 

This conclusion can be extended to other climates, but then it 
would be necessary to heat the room. 

The renewal of the air of a room is accomplished by a current 
of air coming from the outside and by the expansion of the 
heated air. Under these circumstances the renewal is quite slow, 
and a sudden lowering of temperature is not to be feared. By 
the means of blinds with movable slats it is quite easy when de- 
sired to regulate the amount of air that enters and to prevent the 
too rapid lowering of the temperature inside. Paris Cor. 


The Wiener Medicinische Blatter first announced the 
discovery of this microbe by M. Seifert at Wurtzberg, 
in 1884. It was described as composed of micrococci, one 
or two thousandths of a millimetre in diameter, arranged 
like beads on a necklace, and is found in the mucus of the 
trachea, the bronchial tubes, and the nose. It is not to be 
found in ordinary colds in the head, or of bronchitis. 

In January of this year there appeared in the Evening 
World newspaper an alleged illustration of the microbe, 


which was purely the work of some imaginative newspaper 
man. Like many other things that appear in the newspapers 
nowadays, it was absolutely false in every respect. It did 
not resemble the microbe of Seifert in any one particular. 
If the reporter had actually seen any thing like that he rep- 
resented, he had been ludicrously duped. It needs some- 
thing better than a boy from the public school, or even fresh 
from our colleges, to form a judgment on matters of science, 
and especially upon those of such delicacy as this. But it is 
a misfortune when, for the purpose of making a sensation, 
newspapers deliberately deceive the public. The treatment 
for the disease, recommended in the same paper at the time, 
was equally absurd. 

M. Seifert's discovery was afterwards disputed. It was 
questioned whether the microbe described by him was actu- 
ally the cause of influenza, and Doctors Maximilian and 
Adolph Jolles of Vienna put in a later claim, which is well 
defined in the following letter written by them : 

In our own chemical microscopic laboratory we claim to have 
discovered the bacillus of influenza. During the epidemic in 
Vienna our attention was first directed to some very numerous 
capsule cocci, greatly resembling the pneumonia bacilli of Dr. 
Friedlander. In spite of the fact that the sputum was of itself also, 
when microscopically examined, in no way remarkable, showing 
the general characteristics of pneumonia bacteria, and although 
many scientific searches have found in normal sputum similar 
micro-organisms, which, however, differ entirely from the Fried- 
lander capsule cocci as they do not color their surroundings, and, 
owing to the enormous number in which the cocci were found, 
made the sputa really appear like the pure culture of the same, 
we felt called upon early in December to inform practitioners and 
our scientific confreres of this surprising and unusual find, and 
to point to the possibility of pneumonia being present in these 
cases. We continued our investigations carefully, and our sup- 
position that it was a newly discovered microbe organism which 
stood in connection with influenza grew stronger and stronger. 

We then proceeded to the cultivation of the cocci upon gelatine 
plate cultures on slides, and as soon even as the fourth day we 


discovered colonies which resembled strongly Friedlander's cocci. 
Deep down in the gelatine they look like round, sharply denned, 
yellowish, minutely granulated organisms. When seen on the 
surface of the gelatine they present the appearance of infinitesi- 
mally small porcelain buttons. Now for comparison with the 
Friedlander cocci, which they resemble generally, but not when 
prepared as tube cultures, they showed the characteristic nail 
shape ; but placed alongside the Friedlander cocci the influenza 
bacilli appeared less brilliant, more bent and crooked. Subjected 
to the aniline color test, the influenza bacilli go through it very 
much like the Friedlander bacilli. By means of watery aniline 
colors we produced a fine preparation of slides. 

Before concluding our statement it may be of interest to add, 
that in the investigation of the Vienna water supply, which we 
made December 26th, we discovered, in addition to numerous 
saprophyten bacteria, some which the gelatine magnified, some 
which resisted the magnifying process, and also numerous colo- 
nies (in German, nagel colonien), which, under the microscope, 
proved to be diplococci. 

In regard to the inoculation of animals by the process of 
attenuating the virus, our experiments are not yet concluded. 

In an interview held about the time of the publication of 
this letter Dr. Jolles explained the history of the discovery, 
and it is well always to have such records as a guide to other 
investigators. He said : 

We came upon a trace of the bacilli quite accidentally, about 
the middle of December, in a sample of urine sent us by a prac- 
titioner, who thought that his patient was suffering from kidney 
disease. Examining the urine microscopically we discovered a 
bacillus, which, owing to the peculiar cassock formation of the 
head, we called " the bishop bacillus." It was a bacillus we had 
never seen before, nor had it ever been signalled by any 

We immediately set to work with a whole staff upon an exami- 
nation of the defecation and urine of influenza patients in the 


general hospital and in private practice, and in every case the 
bishop bacilli were found in great numbers, while in excretions 
from various other maladies examined at the same time the 
bacilli could not be found. This we did to avoid the argument 
brought against the Mexican, Dr. Cordova, to the effect that the 
peronospera lutea is found in the blood of all who die in certain 
seasons at Vera Cruz, whether yellow fever be prevalent or not. 

They resemble in no way the cholera microbe, but have many 
points of resemblance with the bacilli of pneumonia discovered 
by Dr. Friedlander. 

I wish to accentuate the absolute difference in form and 
nature between the two animalculae, because it is still popularly 
believed that influenza is a fprerunner of cholera, which belief, I 
think, we have scientifically disposed of. Now, on the other 
hand, the influenza bacilli and the pneumonia bacilli are 
undoubtedly of the same family and analogous. 

I have as yet decided nothing about inoculation, but I hope 
that that process may not be postponed to the Greek Kalends. We 
have tried the bacilli and attenuated substantially the virus, but 
our first case of inoculation killed the patient a rabbit on which 
we tried it a week ago. It died immediately of blood-poisoning. 

I cannot speak about the experiments upon which we are now 
engaged except to say that they promise well. 

Another curious discovery was made on December 28th, when 
the epidemic was at its height. I then examined some of the 
water that comes to the city from the Kaiser Well, a hundred 
kilometres away in the Styrian Mountains, and I found two 
hundred and twenty-eight bacilli in every cubic centimetre of 

When la grippe first made its appearance in Europe the 
doctors were perplexed. There was more excuse for them 
than there was for the consternation of the physicians of 
America, because the disease spread westward, and Ameri- 
cans had the experience of Europe to guide them. In 
December, 1889, the epidemic was fully prevalent in Paris, 
and various theories were formulated about it. Some readily 
regarded it as a precursor of cholera. And here is an ex- 
ample of the value of a knowledge of microbes, since the 


bacillus of cholera and that of influenza are so different that 
any idea of a connection between the two diseases may at 
once be set aside. A resident in Paris at the time thus 
described the general nature of the attack : 

The influenza epidemic is in full swing. It has captured 
the Military School of Saint-Cyr. It has attacked the corps 
de ballet at the Opera. It has made a clean sweep through 
great shops like the " Louvre " and the " Bon MarcheV' 
In fact, nothing since the Eiffel tower has absorbed such 
public attention as this aggravating and mysterious malady 
that has swooped down upon us from Russia and to-day 
holds not less than one hundred thousand Parisians in its 

Dr. Albert Robin, of the Acade'mie de Mdecine, described 
the symptoms as headache, pains in the eyes, soreness over 
the body, loss of appetite, high fever, and a general sense of 
lassitude and discomfort. These general symptoms may be 
got rid of, but they are apt to be followed by bronchial 
attacks, coryza, sore throat, diarrhoea, pleurisy, or pneumo- 
nia, and it is in these that the actual danger rests. The 
time of the disease was from two to eight days, but the 
sequelae might cause it to drag on for many weeks. 

Dr. J. A. Villemin, also of the Academy, was disposed to 
regard la grippe as identical with dengue fever common in 
Syria and the East and also well understood in some of the 
Southern States and the West Indies, a fact which Dr. 
Villemin did not seem to be aware of, though he recognized 
that it was due to a microbe, and also that that microbe 
came through the atmosphere and not, as in cholera and 
some forms of fever and dysentery, through the' water. 

Dr. Coroil is a specialist on tuberculosis, and he regarded 
la grippe as of very little importance. But he, too, never 
questioned that it was caused by a microbe, although neither 
he nor Dr. Villemin was willing to give credit to Seifert's 
and Jolles' discoveries. Dr. Coroil, in fact, distinctly denies 
that the special microbe of influenza and la grippe has been 
identified. He explains his skepticism thus : 



" The saliva of a healthy person contains ten or twenty 
different kinds of microbes, which are not only harmless, 
but which are absolutely necessary to the digestion. As 
soon, however, as a person becomes affected with any dis- 
ease of a contagious nature the number of microbes in the 
various bodily secretions become considerably increased, 
and what makes the task difficult is that " good microbes " 
and "bad microbes" become hopelessly mixed up, and it 
takes us years of patient experimenting to separate and 
classify them." 

Nevertheless it is likely that if Doctors Jolles and Seifert 
had been Frenchmen Dr. Coroil and his colleagues in the 
Academic would readily have acknowledged the value of 
their investigations. 


Nobody with a sense of humor could have failed to see 
the funny side of la grippe's visit to this country. The 
people had heard a little about it, and the doctors ought to 
have heard every thing. But the consternation that it caused 
on all sides was inexplicable except on the ground of igno- 
rance. The newspapers exaggerated it and alarmed the 
people, at the same time that they offered methods of treat- 
ment which they said anybody might use, but which were 
worthless and often dangerous. Druggists broke the laws by 
prescribing, and they helped, in no small degree, by their 
blunders, to spread the disease as well as to increase the 
public alarm. Many people thus were induced to think they 
had it, while their worst trouble was simply cold, and many 
others who had it were led to neglect it until worse conse- 
quences had to be experienced. Between druggists and 
newspapers, the visitation was intensified at least a hundred- 

The medical profession, too, as a body, seemed to lose its 
head. It was confused and bewildered, and did not know 
what to do. A few foreign physicians, who, happily, are 


among us, retained themselves, and smiling at the fuss that 
they saw around them, they treated their patients on sound 
principles and were successful. But to most of our local 
diploma-holders the visitor was a very troublesome and in- 
comprehensible stranger. 

To illustrate this I shall not depend upon my own observa- 
tions, or upon the knowledge that came to me at the time, 
but will quote largely from some contributions to The World, 
whose management cannot be charged with partiality toward 
foreign citizens. It must be stated, as a caution to the 
reader, that physicians in New York are accustomed to such 
interviews with reporters for the purpose of obtaining an 
advertisement. Sometimes, like other people, they pay the 
reporters, or even take their contribution to the office for the 
sake of getting such an interview. But this does not affect 
the value of their statements in regard to treatment. 

A professor at one of the medical schools, being asked how 
he treated la grippe, said : 

" Thus far I have simply administered antipyrine for the 
first few days, combined with digitalis ; after the bronchial 
affection has become prominent, a cough mixture containing 
minute doses of apomorphia and jaborandi, together with 
the inhalation at night of tincture of benzine in hot water. 
That is about the amount of my treatment thus far. I have 
not given a dose of quinine, and do not expect to give any. 
It is of no service whatever except when the patient has 
malaria complicated with the disease." 

A physician in East Twenty-ninth Street said to an inter- 
viewer : 

" The onset of the disease is sudden. It is preceded 
by malaise, then usually a decided chill, which is followed by 
fever. Great prostration is felt, compelling the sufferer to 
take to bed. The weakness which it produces over the 
whole system is distressing. There are also severe pains in 
the limbs, across the lower part of the back, over the chest 
and heart, in the head, around the eyeballs, and under the 
bridge of the nose. The digestive organs are affected, loss 


of appetite ensues, accompanied with great thirst, a coated 
tongue, sometimes cofic pains, with nausea, diarrhoea, and 
vomiting. Sneezing and severe catarrhal symptoms generally 
develop, but often not until the second or third day, and 
there is frequently a feeling of suffocation, with marked dif- 
ficulty of breathing. No two persons are affected alike, and 
the treatment would have to be suited to the physical condi- 
tion of the patient. It is not always necessary to administer 
medicine, nor would the same kind of medicine be applicable 
in all cases." 

A doctor in Forty-fifth Street was serious in his opinion 
that the outbreak was an epidemic. The first symptoms, 
according to that gentleman, resembled the onset of typhoid. 

" It begins," he said, " with a chill, and in some cases is 
accompanied by extreme weakness. In the cases of two 
ladies I attended, this weakness developed so rapidly that 
fainting fits ensued. A fever usually succeeds, and the tem- 
perature rises to as high as 102 degrees. There are also 
severe headaches, pains in the eyes, back, and limbs, and gen- 
erally all over the muscular system, accompanied by cold 
chills running up and down the back. I believe it is a self- 
limited disease, and the patient who is careful during the 
febrile stage will recover in an average of three days under 
proper treatment. 

" The treatment must vary. Quinine is useless. I know 
of one case of pneumonia certainly due to exposure while 
suffering from an attack of this disease, and until the real 
nature of the malady has been discovered, people should take 
no chances or run any risks by neglecting it." 

" You think, then, that there is some doubt as to what the 
disease really is ? " 

" I do. When the first case came under my notice I did 
not thoroughly comprehend what it could be. If the symp- 
toms were those of ordinary influenza, I could not have mis- 
taken them, but there are many strange features in the 
present trouble which raise a doubt in any mind as to what 
it can really be. It is not certain by any means that this is 


the same disease which has visited Europe, and which has 
become known as the grip. The other day I came in contact 
with a man who claimed to have had the grip a number of 
times in Northern Germany, and whose son was afflicted 
with the disease which has visited us, and he told me that 
the latter is entirely different in its symptoms from the 
disease with which he has so frequently been afflicted. 

" Under la grippe he never suffered from any fever and 
had no chills, only a severe coryza, or cold in the head, with 
more or less muscular pains and a stiff neck. This latter 
symptom a stiff neck is something I have not seen as yet 
in any of my patients." 

" Do you expect that the disease will become as wide- 
spread as it has been reported to have been in Europe ? ' 

" If it is the same disease I believe the same results will 
follow, but whether it is or not I am of the belief that the 
people are likely to become better acquainted with it during 
the next few days, and I would advise every man to take to 
his bed at once and protect himself from exposure as the 
surest means of preventing subsequent troubles from develop- 

A Thirty-eighth Street physician, in answer to a questioner, 
said : " The extent of the illness, in most cases, is dependent 
upon the physical condition of the patient. As far as I have 
been able to observe, the general symptoms of the disease 
seem to be similar to those that characterize the European 
epidemic, only it seems to be less virulent in its nature with 
us than it has been abroad. 

" There are some people, of course, who are afflicted more 
severely than others, but that is the case in all diseases. I 
should consider that an attack of this influenza on a person 
suffering from other diseases might be quite serious. This 
epidemic has characteristics of its own. The cases which I 
have seen are not, by any manner of means, like the ordinary 
run of spring and fall influenza. At present I am not pre- 
pared to state positively what the disease may be, as that 
will have to be scientifically determined later. 


" As to the treatment to be administered, I do not think 
that any one method would be applicable in all cases. I 
have just simply treated patients according to their peculiar 
requirements ; and what I might prescribe in one instance I 
would vary in another." 

A physician, whose name is well known through his writ- 
ings and what the profession calls legitimate advertising, said 
that it was a great mistake to suppose that the epidemic was 
the same as that in Europe. Others declared that it was 
identical. Many insisted that quinine was useless ; others 
that nothing but quinine would avail. Here is the prescrip- 
tion of a Brooklyn physician : 

9 Quinia? sulph. gr. xxiv. 

Antipyrin .... gr. xxiv. 
Ext. belladonnse . . . gr. -^ 
Pulv. opii .... gr. iij. 
Divide into twelve parts, and take one every three hours. 

One man would tell us that belladonna was bad, and an- 
other that opium and morphia were dangerous. A physician 
in Washington described his treatment as " rational." " I 
would give," he said, " belladonna to control the mucous 
discharge, aconite for the fever, and quinine and salol rather 
than antipyrine." 

A homoeopath has the following remarkable story to tell, 
and if others of his sect acted similarly, little wonder that 
the homoeopaths were unsuccessful, except in lending en- 
couragement to undertakers. 

" I give," said this learned person, " arsenicum where the 
leading indications are great prostration, thirst, anxious rest- 
lessness, burning of nostrils, and running of thin, watery dis- 
charge from nose and eyes. Mercurius is indicated where 
the prominent symptoms are sore throat, fever, with sweat- 
ing, sneezing, and a somewhat thicker discharge from nose. 
I give bryonia where vertigo is prominent and patient is 
unable to raise head except with great effort, and experiences 
aching of limbs, etc. Gelsemium is the proper remedy when 
marked symptoms are prostration, aching in limbs, and feel- 
ing of heaviness and stupor." 


A St. Louis doctor said : " The influenza, or la grippe as 
it is now fashionably called, is a vegetable parasite, and there 
is no serious danger attached to an attack of it, provided the 
attack is not on a very young child or a very weak old per- 
son. Its treatment would be a matter to consider after the 
case has come under professional notice. Like bronchitis, 
which is not in itself dangerous, la grippe might, through 
neglect, become a dangerous malady, and finally develop a 
case of pneumonia." 

Another in that town believed there was no such thing as 
la grippe, and that it was only an exaggerated cold ; while a 
physician in Chicago, who had had experience in Eastern 
Europe, had no doubt about its being the genuine Russian 
disease. I quote the interview with the gentleman in full. 

" All of the cases I have had," he remarked, " have shown the 
unmistakable symptoms of Russian influenza, and some of them 
have developed into very bad cases. The first case coming 
under my observation was last Monday at a restaurant. An 
acquaintance came in and sat down to the table with me. His 
tonsils were swollen, and the air passages of his head clogged 
with mucus. 

" After examining him, I unhesitatingly declared that he was 
afflicted with influenza. 

" There is not as much sneezing accompanying the disease as 
is popularly supposed. The first symptoms are a feeling of lassi- 
tude and weakness, a tightening of the air passages of the head 
and throat, and, well, a person appears about to be stricken with 
pneumonia, and if the disease is not arrested, pneumonia will 

" Do you think the disease will be as severe here as in Europe ? " 

" It will be over the city in a week or two, and it will be the 
genuine Russian influenza. There is no mistake about that. I 
was in Russia in 1875 and 1881, when the disease was so preva- 
lent, and I know from the experience I gained there that there is 
no use endeavoring to check it, for it can't be stopped. In my 
opinion the disease will be severe, and there may be some deaths. 
I have been in London, where the disease is now prevalent, and 
I cannot see much difference between the climate of that city and 


that of Chicago, with the exception of the heavy fogs they have 

" What about the germs of the disease ? " 

" They are carried in the air. The first case I spoke of showed 
the presence of the bacteria in large numbers. While examining 
the patient, some of the mucus dropped on my coat, and I had 
a touch of the disease myself, although I arrested it in time. I 
also examined some of the bacteria under the microscope. They 
are the most active of living things I ever saw, and are constantly 
moving. You can imagine what a havoc a lot of those bacteria 
make when they get into one's system." 

"How ought the disease to be treated?" 

" The patient must be watched carefully and given proper 
remedies. The disease must run its course, however. The only 
thing that can be done when it has become constitutional is to 
lessen its effect on the system, and the patient must be given 
remedies that will minimize the suffering." 

In Philadelphia the physicians had recourse to quinine 
and whiskey, and external applications of brandy. One 
authority there said it was only a common cold ; another, 
who is esteemed a specialist on fevers, held, on the other 
hand, that la grippe is deadly in its results, unless given 
prompt treatment, because the varying temperature of the 
blood is productive of inflammation of the lungs and bron- 
chitis through the inhalation of cold air into the warm body. 
Philadelphia is also the home of the doctor who traced 
the introduction of the epidemic into this country to the 
exposure of a corpse which had been brought from Paris 
while the disease was raging there ! 

The Boston people were terribly frightened. Quackery 
runs rampant there, and there were several deaths. One man, 
who boasts a large number of patients but denies any 
medical association, said it was nothing more than rheuma- 
tism plus a cold in the head. A doctor there identified it 
with dengue fever, yet another thought no two cases were 
alike. The Christian Science people recommended prayer 
as the only possible cure. Nothing but prayer to kill 
microbes ! Another medical sect of Boston believed in rum 

APPENDIX. 3 1 3 

and did not care for prayer. Rum was to be used internally 
and externally, chiefly internally, and rum was to be put into 
a bowl and set fire to, and then the patient's feet were to be 
plunged into it and held there. 

Dr. Yee Joe, a celebrated Chinese doctor, scorned the idea 
of his people being affected with la grippe because "the 
Chinese wear their clothing loose, thereby preventing the 
moisture due to overheating from rendering the body liable 
to cold." Dr. Yee Joe added that he treats a cold by the 
sweating process, using water steaming hot, with ginger and 
pepperment added. 

The prescription of the New York Board of Health, as 
given by a physician connected with it, was : 

" Pure vaseline to bathe the nostrils and to be drawn up like 
snuff. Small pills composed of quinine, camphor, and bella- 
donna, taken internally four or five times a day " ; but several 
officials in that department, who were taken with the epidemic, 
gave the assurance that nothing was better than good gin, 
and plenty of it. 


A long discussion took place at a recent meeting of the 
New York Academy of Medicine where attention was es- 
pecially given to the danger likely to arise in this country from 
the spread of leprosy. Dr. Morrow who has studied the 
disease closely said that in his opinion the danger was not 
such as seriously menaced the public health, as the disease 
would spread very slowly, if at all. At the same time it 
should be borne in mind that leprosy is a disease in which 
the resources of medical science prove altogether futile, and 
measures should therefore be taken to stamp it out. It is 
probable that there are more cases in this country now than 
ever before. The report of 42 cases in New Orleans last year 
was a surprise to every one, and the propriety of legislative 
enactment for the suppression of the disease is unquestionable. 

Dr. C. W. Allen said that his convictions on this question 
were very decided. Two years ago, in a paper read before 


the Medical Society of the County of New York, he had con- 
tended that lepers should not be admitted into this country, 
and that those already here should be segregated. There 
were at the present time, as has been stated by Dr. Morrow, 
many more lepers in the United States than ever before. 
Two years ago he had placed the number at 250. This 
number, he had reason to believe, was too small at that time, 
and he thought there could be no doubt that there had been 
a considerable increase since then. When we considered the 
large number of cases all about us, and the increased likeli- 
hood of the spread of the disease from the increasing facilities 
of modern travel, etc., this question became one that we 
would no longer shut our eyes to. It was true that thus far 
very few cases had developed here (almost all being imported 
from other countries), yet some instances had been reported 
by Dr. Bulkley and others. Of the 42 cases reported in New 
Orleans, where no leprosy was supposed to exist, 29 were 
natives of Louisiana, and 22 of the city of New Orleans. 
One of these had been a nurse in a hospital where a leper 
was under treatment for some time. The evidences of the 
contagiousness of the disease were positive, and as long as a 
single leper existed anywhere he would constitute a source 
of danger to those about him. 

Dr. L. Duncan Bulkley said he regarded this as one of the 
most important questions ever brought before the Academy. 
He thought no one could fail to see that whenever leprosy 
has been allowed free scope it has spread ; while, on the 
other hand, whenever proper measures have been taken in 
time against its spread it has been exterminated. About 
twenty years ago he saw in the New York Hospital a very bad 
case of leprosy. Since then he had seen two or three cases 
every year in New York. He had met with one case in a 
patient who had never been many miles from Poughkeepsie, 
where he lived, and another in one who had never been far. 
away from New York. Leprosy always comes from leprosy. 
He differed from Dr. Morrow, however, in the opinion that 
the bacillus leprae does not exist in soil, water, etc., and be- 
lieved that it may be left there, like other disease germs. 

APPENDIX. 3 1 5 

Dr. H. G. Piffard said that ten years ago he had read a 
paper before the Academy in which he discussed the 
question raised to-night. The points for which he contended 
at that time were, first, the contagiousness of the disease ; 
second, the segregation of lepers ; third, that it was the func- 
tion of the National Government to attend to the matter. 
Since then his views had not altered. At that meeting a 
committee was appointed from the Academy to investigate 
the subject of leprosy in this country, and the committee so 
appointed performed the work required of it so far as it was 
possible for it to do so. It did not succeed, however, in 
tracing out more than forty or fifty cases in the United 
States. Many cases unquestionably escaped observation, 
and there was no doubt in his mind that at the present time 
there are at least five times as many lepers in the country as 
there were then. That segregation was necessary was shown 
by the fact that wherever this has not been practised the 
disease has increased, not in arithmetical, but geometrical 
progression. To the question, Whose charge is it to attend 
to this segregation? he would answer, The National Gov- 
ernment. The Government should, in the first place, pre- 
vent the entrance of all lepers into the country; and, 
secondly, induce, as far as possible, all lepers now here to 
go to properly appointed lazarettos. It should be the duty 
of each State to place its own lepers in these lazarettos. 

Dr. Morrow, in closing the discussion, said it was an 
important fact, he thought, that the spread of leprosy in the 
Sandwich Islands had occurred under conditions of high 
civilization, the state of the population being greatly 
superior to what it was fifty years before. The people 
there are in reality infinitely better off than the great 
majority of the poorer classes in this country. For one 
thing, they are very cleanly in their habits and are accus- 
tomed to bathe four or five times a day. Yet, notwith- 
standing their improved condition, the scourge of leprosy 
had attained the most fearful proportions among them. 

In regard to the contagiousness of leprosy, to his mind, 
the evidences of contagiousness abounded and super- 


abounded. He did not wish to be considered an alarmist, 
but in regard to this disease he believed that a wholesome 
dread was better than a false security. 

At the conclusion of his remarks Dr. Morrow exhibited, 
under the microscope, specimens of the bacillus leprae which 
had retained their vitality for a very long period. 

In the New York Sun of August 18, 1889, some interesting 
particulars were given arising out of the death of Father 
Damien, from which the following extracts are taken : 

The death of Father Damien, the heroic priest who went 
among the Hawaiian lepers at Molokai, and as a leper himself 
perished, again illustrates the fact that the true and historic value 
of a hero's life is apt to be quite concealed from the hero and to 
be very different from what the hero imagines it to be. Damien 
found the lepers cast upon a grim strip of rock which shot out 
into the blue ocean from a prison wall of cliffs three thousand 
feet high. 

The lepers had no decent food, no decent water, only miserable 
huts for shelter, were abandoned to death and suffering in its 
most awful form. Damien pleaded and thundered away at the 
Hawaiian government until ships began to touch at the leper 
colony with clothes and good, clean food in abundance and 
supervising officials who had hearts in them. He made explora- 
tions along the coast and up among the jagged hillsides till 
he found springs from which flowed pure water : and this he 
brought down to the lepers in pipes which he made the govern- 
ment lay. He caused good houses to be built for the sufferers, 
and founded schools and hospitals. When he died he left the 
once bleak home of the lepers almost a garden, a fair and really 
beautiful spot, in which men were industrious and to a certain 
degree happy, tilling their little plots of ground, living in neat 
cottages, and sending their children to school. 

When Damien died the story of his life thrilled the world, it is 
true ; but it also drew the attention of men of science, of physi- 
cians, of princes, and newspapers and churches to the terrible 
disease by which and for which Damien died. In England the 
excitement over Damien and interest in the disease amounted to 
a furor. Thousands of pounds sterling were subscribed for the 


lepers, and grave commissions of medical men set out to investi- 
gate the dread disease anew. Old reports on the subject, tales of 
travellers and sea captains, were examined anew. The Prince of 
Wales caused a panic by declaring that he knew positively of a 
leper who was employed in one of the great London abattoirs. 
In this country by far the most valuable and interesting contribu- 
tion to the literature of the subject was an address by Dr. Prince 
A. Morrow before the Academy of Medicine in this city. In his 
address, Dr. Morrow set forth the startling fact that leprosy, so 
far from being an extinct and purely historical disease, was, 
in fact, gaining ground, and prevailed to an alarming extent 
in the United States. 

Few have heard of the afflicted country of Tracadie, which lies 
between the Baie de Chaleurs and the Gulf of St. Lawrence, on 
the River Tracadie, on the south shore of the Gulf of St. Law- 
rence. About one hundred and thirty years ago, as tradition has 
it, a ship from the Levant, was wrecked on the coast. . Some of 
the sailors were rescued and received hospitality from the settlers, 
the Acadians from France. Some women were the first to 
contract the malady ; but no precautions were taken against 
its spread until 1817, when Ursula Landry died of the disease, 
and then all took alarm. In 1847 the government of New Bruns- 
wick established a lazaretto in Tracadie, and there are now many 
cases there. 

When the Acadians were transported to Louisiana they took the 
disease with them. There are now hundreds, if not thousands, of 
lepers in Louisiana. There are two leprous centres in the Teche 
River district of Louisiana, at St. Martinsville and at Bayou 
Lafourche. Dr. Morrow says that he learned of many scattered 
cases along the line of the Southern Pacific Railroad, and that he 
saw cases in the San Pablo Hospital of Mexico and in the streets 
of the city. There are now very many cases of leprosy along the 
southern Atlantic coast and on the sea islands there, these cases 
being brought by emigrants from the West Indies. There are 
said to be forty-two cases of leprosy at New Orleans and one 
hundred at Key West. The Scandinavians have made leprosy 
not particularly uncommon in the Northwestern States. China- 
men have brought the disease to the Pacific coast, so that there 
are now over a score of known cases there and many more which 
are suspected and concealed. 


Leprosy now exists in almost every part of the world. Its 
ravages are particularly violent in the Sandwich Islands, in Japan 
and China, in India, Palestine, Brazil, Norway and Sweden. 
There is no civilized region of the globe where isolated cases may 
not be found. In 1870 there were said to be one hundred and 
twenty thousand cases of leprosy in India. In the Sandwich 
Islands there are now over two thousand cases of leprosy known 
and many more suspected. The spread of the disease threatens 
the extinction of the entire Hawaiian race. In each country 
where it exists the history of its spread is the same. The history 
of the Acadian lepers is a perfect illustration. Starting from a 
single case, brought to the land in some chance way, the presence 
of the disease is unnoticed until its virus is fairly in the veins of a 
generation. The segregation and imprisonment of lepers are 
then ordered, but it seems almost impossible to stay the slow 
creeping of the disease among the people. 

It is not too much to say that leprosy is the most interesting 
and horrible malady known to man. The most ancient of dis- 
eases, it is the one about which science knows the least. It is 
absolutely incurable, and all the remedies which have been ap- 
plied to it so far have been merely experiments. The way in 
which it is transmitted from man to man is a perfect mystery. It 
cannot be said to be hereditary, because in families where both 
parents had the disease the children were perfectly healthy, and 
none of their descendants has shown the slightest signs of the 
malady. On the other hand, in families where one or both of 
the parents are lepers one child may be a leper, while its brothers 
and sisters are not attacked, and among the descendants of all of 
these children leprosy appears at random. Old as the disease is, 
the doctors have never yet been able to settle whether or not it is 
contagious. Thousands of instances may be cited where men, of 
no especial ability to resist contagion, have passed their lives 
among lepers, mingling with the lepers in the most intimate 
manner, and have remained perfectly free from the taint of the 
malady. Just as many instances may be cited of people who 
have become lepers on very slight exposure. A leprous man may 
marry a healthy woman and the woman never becomes a leper, 
and vice versa, while, on the contrary, the marriage of a leper to 
one not a leper often produces terrible results. 


Undoubtedly the first exhaustive investigation into the mys- 
teries of the disease was that made by Drs. Danielssen and 
Boeck, in Norway, in 1848. In Norway most of the cases of 
leprosy occur among the very poorest classes of the inhabitants, 
and especially among those living around the shores of the deep 
bays or fiords on the west coast. The huts of the people gen- 
erally are of one low, narrow room, in which all the family live, 
with a small window that is not made to open, and are usually 
planted down in a damp site and surrounded by filth. Physi- 
cians in Norway and Sweden maintained for years that leprosy 
was hereditary, and that it flourished especially among people 
living on a fish diet, like those referred to. In these districts 
fish, frequently in an uncooked, salted, or dried form, is the 
staple article of food. Yet this does not account, of course, for 
the extreme prevalence of the disease in places where fish is sel- 
dom or rarely eaten ; or for the fact that numbers of people who 
largely consume fish, and even stale fish, never develop leprosy. 

In the American Medical Record i August 16. 1884, Dr. Gred- 
dings, of Aiken, S. C, says : 

" Isolated cases of leprosy have been observed in Charleston 
and its vicinity for many years, the present being the latest of a 
series of twenty that have been brought to my notice during the 
last twenty-five years. ... In none of these cases was the disease 
hereditary, although in one instance a mother and daughter were 
affected at the same time." 

A few years ago the question of the contagiousness of leprosy 
was made the subject of an elaborate report to the Board of 
Health in Hawaii by the physicians in charge of the leper settle- 
ment there. Prominent among those making the report was Dr. 
Edward Arning, a German expert who was employed by the 
Hawaiian government to study the disease. The investigations 
made by Dr. Arning resulted in confirming the discovery of Dr. 
Hansen, of Norway, that leprosy was the work of a bacillus known 
as the " bacillus leprae." Dr. Arning made some interesting ex- 
periments on a human being, inoculating with the bacillus leprae 
the condemned convict Keanu. The sentence of Keanu was 
commuted to penal servitude for life for the purpose of the 
experiments, the prisoner himself assenting to the arrangement. 
Keanu was inoculated with the leprous germ in September, 1884, 


but he has never developed the disease. As the result of all his 
experiments, Dr. Arning made the following statement of what 
he regarded as proved : 

1. The bacillus leprse is a parasite limited to the human race. 

2. It must be transmitted either directly from individual to in- 
dividual, or 

3. Run through a stage of intermediate life (spore condition), 
which we. are at present unable to detect, but which may be 
present in the soil, water, or food, but can only get into them 
from the diseased tissue of the leper. 

4. Accepting either theory, the direct or indirect transmission, 
we must look upon every individual leper, whether in the in- 
cipient or advanced stage of .the disease, as a dangerous focus of 
the malady, he multiplying and nursing the germ in his tissues. 

5. As every seed requires its peculiar conditions of soil, atmos- 
phere, etc., to allow it to strike, and, when struck, to grow up to 
be itself a seed-bearing plant, so does the leprous germ require a 
certain disposition of the human soil to strike and thrive. What 
this peculiar disposition may be, we are at present unable to 
define. It is evidently a disposition which may coexist with 
apparent good health, as many examples of strong, robust men 
developing leprosy show us. This disposition may possibly be 
transmitted by heredity. I desire not to be misunderstood on this 
particular point. I do not believe that leprosy itself is in any 
case congenital ; but I do believe that a certain weakness to resist 
its attacks may be transmitted. 

This was as definite as Dr. Arning would put things. It 
amounted to saying in plain words that leprosy was sometimes 
contagious and sometimes not, " requiring a certain disposition 
to thrive." Dr. Arning had a disagreement with the officials of 
the Board of Health, in consequence of which he resigned his 
place and left Hawaii in the latter part of 1884. 

Dr. Fitch declared that the spread of the disease was due to 
heredity. Superintendent Mouritz, of the settlement, said that 
all this talk was rubbish in view of the enormous spread of the 
disease. In 1847 there were no cases of leprosy in the Hawaiian 
archipelago, and there are now there fully two thousand five hun- 
dred. Heredity cannot account for this. Dr. Mouritz's remarks 
are very interesting. He says : 


The whole history of leprosy in the Hawaiian Islands, from its 
propagation to its present rapid spread and development, verily 
proves that it can only be accounted for by regarding it as a 
contagious disease. Whatever else may be said of its being non- 
contagious in other ancient countries where the disease exists 
endemically, these statements do not apply, or should not apply, 
to the disease in the Hawaiian Islands. 

That leprosy did not prevail on these islands until many years 
after they were open to foreign intercourse receives great confir- 
mation in the fact that no true aboriginal word is in use for the 
name of the disease. I consider this a most significant illustra- 
tion of the rapid spread of leprosy within a comparatively short 
era. I believe it perfectly safe to affirm that, did leprosy exist 
among the ancient Hawaiians, they would not call it, as the pres- 
ent race do, " Chinese sickness." Whatever defects the Hawaiian 
language may have, a very casual observation shows that it was 
in the highest degree, and is, a language of minuteness and ex- 
actitude ; and it can scarcely be imagined that naming a slow, 
progressive disease like leprosy was beyond the power of their 
intellect, and yet this is really what those who claim to trace a 
hereditary development alone of the disease ask us to do. 

Dr. Mouritz refers to the fact that the Hawaiian name for lep- 
rosy is " Mai Pake," or " Chinese sickness." That leprosy was 
brought into the archipelago by Chinamen is the common belief 
and statement there. In the second place, Dr. Mouritz very 
pointedly asks those people who deny the contagiousness of 
leprosy to account for cases like those of Father Damien. Writ- 
ing in 1884 (Father Damien having, of course, died since), Dr. 
Mouritz gives this history of his case : 

Father Damien arrived at the settlement in the year 1873, and 
has lived there continuously ever since. He is a Belgian, of good 
physique, and when he arrived was thirty-four years of age. 
During all the period of his residence he has been daily and 
hourly in contact with lepers of various grades, and many very 
severe. Until 1884 he felt fairly well. In that year pains in the 
left foot troubled him ; these continued to get worse, and, in the 
absence of any other signs, were attributed to rheumatism. Tow- 
ard the end of the year 1884 he consulted Dr. Arning, and to 
this gentleman must be given the credit of diagnosing the dis- 


ease in its very early stage, as certainly not until six months 
afterward did external manifestations of leprosy develop. In 
May, 1885, there were no striking changes in his face when ex- 
amined by Dr. Arning and myself. In August, 1885, a small 
leprous tubercle manifested itself on the lobe of the right ear, 
and, from that date to the present, diminution and loss of eye- 
brows, infiltration of the integument over the forehead and 
cheeks, are slowly but certainly going on, so that the case of Father 
Damien is a confirmed tubercular one, the symptoms and signs 
now present placing it in that class. 

I believe the majority of cases of leprosy at the settlement, had 
they been rigidly watched, would fall in the same category as 
Father Damien's. Most cases of leprosy are recorded between 
the ages of thirty and fifty years, so heredity is scarcely possible. 

I am also clearly of opinion that leprosy is contagious at the 
beginning and all through its course, and that the " exhalations " 
from the leper are the main agencies at work. 

Dr. Mouritz is of opinion that leprosy is both hereditary and 
contagious. He believes that leprosy may be communicated by 
the various chance kinds of inoculation, as well as by inhalation. 

The ancient idea about leprosy was that it was highly conta- 
gious, and the cruel ways in which lepers were put apart from 
their fellow-men are familiar to all readers of history. It is un- 
doubtedly true that very many people perhaps the majority of 
people are impervious to the contagion, and that the disease 
indeed requires a " certain disposition to strike and thrive." But 
in this view all lepers are dangerous. Of the reports made by 
the physicians at the leper settlement of Hawaii, that of Dr. Mou- 
ritz seems full of sense, and to rest upon the great truth that 
against a fact the gates of theory cannot prevail. If the heroic 
Belgian priest who offered up his life at Molokai shall have been 
the means of notably proving that the horrible disease of which 
he died is actually communicable from man to man, he will indeed 
be worthy of canonization by his Church, and will have built for 
himself an eternal fame. 


A strong infant, four months old, was shown to Dr. Corbeau, 
a Paris physician. He was told that it had lost two hundred 


grammes in a few days and displayed symptoms of general 
weakening, and at the same time of quite copious vomiting. He 
was informed that the nurse, who appeared to be a buxom girl 
with a bust as ample as could be desired, was indisposed for 
the second time since she had been nursing the child. During 
the interrogation the physician learned that the woman had now 
been nursing for about a year. Still it must in justice be said 
that M. Corbeau admitted that except during the previous two 
weeks the infant had developed most satisfactorily. But since 
the child was complaining now, what could be the cause of it ? 
An idea came naturally to his mind, old milk. This expression, 
by its very vagueness, did not much improve matters. Further- 
more, the nurse protested, and called to witness the excellence 
of the previous services that she had rendered to the child. Two 
samples of the suspected milk were taken, and M. Maquart, 
druggist, formerly attached to the Paris hospitals, subjected 
them to a most scrupulous examination. They were analyzed by 
four different processes, which all gave absolutely identical 
results : 

Density, 10.30 and 10.35. 

Fatty substances, normal. 

Caseine, only slight traces. 

The conclusion to be drawn was self-evident, and the nurse 
had to be discharged ; another one took her place, and as she 
offered all the necessary requisites, the child was seen under her 
care to regain its former state in almost no time. 


The legislation of the French authorities is as paternal in 
some things as ours is vexatious in others, and so the 
Academy of Medicine have sought to lay down the rules 
that should govern the stove-makers. The following is a 
copy of the resolutions agreed upon by that body, and 
although the subject would hardly be thought of sufficient 
magnitude for the consideration even of a legislature that 
has made it a statutory offence to feed a sparrow, yet they 
are well worth attention : 


First. The sale of a stove should not be authorized unless its 
draught is sufficient to transform the carbon into carbonic acid. 

Second. No pipe of a movable stove should be allowed to be 
fitted to any chimney unless the chimney has a suitable and 
adequate draught. 

Third. An examination of the neighboring chimneys should 
be required before setting up a stove, to avoid the gases from 
one chimney being driven back or filtering into another, and to 
preserve the interested parties or their neighbors from being 
poisoned at a distance by oxycarbonic gas. 

Fourth, The public should be warned of the danger that is 
incurred by having, during the night, in an adjoining room, one 
of these slowly burning stoves. 


One of the most interesting papers recently published on 
this subject appeared last year in the Journal of the Ameri- 
can Medical Association, from the pen of Dr. Bayard Holmes, 
Director of the Bacteriological Laboratory at the Chicago 
Medical College. It is deserving very careful perusal. Dr. 
Holmes is a most industrious investigator and his observa- 
tions are eminently practical. 

There are very few students of nature to-day, wrote the doctor, 
who are not imbued with the philosophy of evolution. Every 
isolated fact in the life of an organism takes on an added interest 
when viewed in its relations to the great principle of natural 
selection. From the standpoint of the evolutionist, the subject of 
parasitism is a very extensive one, and the relations of the patho- 
genic micro-organisms to their host occupy only a limited district 
in this great province of thought. 

It can be fairly presumed that those relations of conviviality 
which we see existing between mutualists, between messmates, 
and between host and parasites, are subjects for natural selection. 
Indeed, the study of the fertilization of flowers shows us the most 
intimate dependence of a large number of plants upon their 
animal parasites, and this, too, accompanied by changes in the 
essential organs of those plants which produced forms most con- 



fusing to the earlier botanists. So mutually beneficial is the 
association of certain species, that they have been called mutual- 
ists. These relations are so far-reaching and intricate that they 
surprise us into the belief that the destruction of a single para- 
sitic species would overthrow the equilibrium of animal life and 
result in changes little short of a biological revolution. I may 
cite the classical observation of Darwin : 

" In several parts of the world insects determine the existence 
of cattle. Perhaps Paraguay offers the most curious instance of 
this * for here neither cattle nor horses nor dogs have ever run 
wild, though they swarm southward and westward in a feral state ; 
and Azara and Reuyger have shown that this is caused by the 
greater number in Paraguay of a certain fly, which lays its eggs in 
the navels of these animals when first born. The increase of 
these flies, numerous as they are, must be habitually checked by 
some means, probably by other parasitic insects. Hence if 
certain insectivorous birds were to decrease in Paraguay, the 
parasitic insects would probably increase ; and this would lessen 
the number of navel-frequenting flies then cattle and horses 
would become feral, and this would certainly greatly alter (as, 
indeed, I have observed in parts of South America) the vegeta- 
tion ; this again would largely affect the insects ; and this, as we 
have just seen in Staffordshire, the insectivorous birds, and so 
onward in ever-increasing circles of complexity." 

The greater number of parasites are found among the lesser 
plants and animals. This is as we should suppose. The parasite 
deriving its support from a smaller organism would soon destroy 
its host, and itself perish in turn. It is secure in its position 
of parasitism only while it takes from its host no more than can 
easily be spared. The condition of parasitism then exists best 
when the assistance which the parasite demands can be granted 
without material injury to the host, or, when the parasite is actu- 
ally beneficial, or even essential to the existence of the host 

There is scarcely any end to the variations and modifications 
which an organism may undergo by natural selection, provided a 
sufficient time be allowed for the changes to be undergone. And, 
moreover, there is no part of an organism which may not be 
modified by this agency if such changes become advantageous to 


it in the struggle for existence. When, therefore, we find an 
adaptation of great complexity we must assume that the relations 
requiring such adaptation have been in action proportionately a 
long time. This is not only the case in the adaptations of an 
organism to its lifeless environments, but it is in the same degree 
the case in the adaptations existing between host and parasite or 
between messmates. 

One of the most remarkable of these convivial adaptations is 
related by Charles Darwin in regard to the slave-making ants. 

" This ant (Formica rufescens) is absolutely dependent cfti its 
slaves ; without their aid, the species would certainly become 
extinct in a single year. The males and fertile females do no 
work of any kind, and the workers or sterile females, though most 
energetic and courageous in capturing slaves, do no other work. 
They are incapable of making their own nests, or of feeding their 
own larvae. When one of the old nests is found inconvenient and 
they have to migrate, it is the slaves which determine the migra- 
tion, and actually carry their masters in their jaws. So utterly 
helpless are the masters that when Huber shut up thirty of them 
without a slave, but with plenty of food which they liked best, and 
with their own larvae and pupae to stimulate them to work, they 
did nothing ; they could not even feed themselves, and many 
perished of hunger. Huber then introduced a single slave 
(Formica fusca), and she instantly set to work, fed and saved the 
survivors, made some cells, attended to the larvae, and put all to 

Such an adaptation of a whole species to an artificial condition 
would be wholly anomalous and unexplainable were it not for the 
fact that related species have been studied in distant localities 
that show a less complete adaptation to any dependence upon the 
condition of slavery. This complicate social arrangement prob- 
ably arose by accident. The larvae of neighboring colonies were 
stolen for food. They were hid away until hunger should require 
them, some of them hatched out and were fed and brought up, 
aud proved useful servants. The workers of such colonies had 
more time for warfare and pillage, and so the number of slaves 
went on increasing from generation to generation with further 
adaptation to the new mode of life until the instinct for robbery 
took the place of the instinct for work. It must have required a 



long time to change the habits and instincts and structure of 
a whole species in this way. Among the Swiss Formica rufes- 
cens slaves are a necessity to the existence of the species. In 
England the Formica sanguinca has slaves only as a convenience, 
and its workers attend to a large share of the work themselves. 
Among other species in all parts of the world slaves are tolerated 
only as waifs and they enter very little into the economy of the 

Time, then, is a most important factor in the action of natural 
selection, and any condition of .parasitism is a very ancient one 
indeed which is so perfectly developed that the life of the para- 
sitic species or the life of the host species is dependent upon its 
uninterrupted perpetuation for its existence. 

The antiquity of the parasitic condition, however, does not 
correspond exactly with the complexity of the morphological 
adaptation between species, for we find that among the flowering 
plants adaptations have been secured limiting the fertilization of 
a species, which adaptations render the extinction of a single 
species of insect in a neighborhood equivalent to the extinction 
of the same plants in the same area. It is evident that the varia- 
tion of the more complex plants is much more rapid and exten- 
sive than the variations of lower forms, for we find that some of 
the lowest forms of plants and animals have existed from the 
earliest geological epochs, while the more complex forms rarely 
present evidence of so great a longevity. 

We are accustomed to look upon chlorophyl almost as an 
essential to vegetable existence, yet there is a great number of 
thallogens which are perfectly devoid of this substance. Those 
plants which contain chlorophyl are able to elaborate from the 
stable inorganic constituents of earth and air, with the help 
of that force which they derive from the sun's rays, organic, un- 
stable, compounds of a very complex molecular condition. Those 
plants which are devoid of chlorophyl must depend for their 
vital force not upon the sun's rays, but upon the energy released 
by the decomposition of those molecules of unstable equilibrium 
which have been built up in the growth of the chlorophyl-pro- 
ducing plants and in that of animals. 

Thus we see that by their very nature those plants devoid of 
chlorophyl are eminently adapted to a saprophytic or parasitic 


existence ; in fact any other mode of life is shut off to them. In 
this class are found the bacteria. 

While adaptations of a most complex character are granted in 
the case of such large parasites as the tape-worms, the flukes, and 
the itch insect, the same possibilities have been denied to such 
unicellular plants as the bacteria. The micrococci average about 
one micron in diameter. To the best objectives they have about 
as much individuality as a single star had in the field of the tele- 
scope before the introduction of the spectroscope. Does this 
prevent the greatest morphological and physiological complex- 
ity ? Not at all. The spermatozoa of man is not much larger, 
and yet it carries with it peculiarities of form, color, voice, and 
psychological functions which are as complex as human life. 
Surely if this is the case, we do not need to question the pos- 
sibility of sufficient room in a microbe for all the complexity of 
structure and function which the argument of this paper demands. 

That there is no corresponding differentiation of structure to 
be seen by the most powerful microscope does not matter, for 
light is so gross a thing that nothing more could be expected. 
The extreme diameter of a micrococcus is say one micron ; the 
length of a wave of light in the middle of the visible spectrum is 
about YZ a micron (E = .5269 microns). What more can be ex- 
pected with such a measure ? Our only hope in this direction 
lies in the use of much shorter waves which are far above the 
lavender and at the limit of photographic recognition. 

When a parasite is wholly dependent upon its host for its ex- 
istence, it is said to be an obligate parasite ; when a parasite is 
able to live outside the host species upon dead animal or vegeta- 
ble matter only with difficulty, it is called a facultative sapro- 
phyte ; and when a species which ordinarily lives a saprophytic 
existence is able under favorable circumstances to become a 
parasite it is called a facultative parasite. 

I will here refer only to obligate and to facultative parasites, 
for, although there are equally interesting relations existing be- 
tween the facultative saprophytes, in the consideration of one of 
them I have already occupied some of the time of this society. 

Our tape-worms are examples of obligate parasites. They can- 
not live outside the bodies of their hosts. They depend for their 
existence upon the fact that the carnivora devour the herbivora. 


The eggs of the tape-worm are innumerable. They are scattered 
by the carnivorous host in its faeces. The rains wash them into 
little pools and brooks, and scatter them upon the foliage and 
grasses. The herbivorous host takes them into its stomach in 
the water it drinks, or on the grass it eats. The warmth and 
secretions of the stomach free the embryos from the imprison- 
ment of their egg-shells. They cling to the wall of the digestive 
tract until they gain strength to force their way into the blood 
currents. There they remain until they are carried to the smallest 
capillaries, in which they establish themselves, and, for some un- 
known reason, they prefer the muscles. Here they go into a sort of 
pupa state, to await the time when their herbivorous host will be 
overtaken and devoured by a carnivorous enemy. In the stom- 
ach of the carnivorous second host, the wall of the pupa is 
dissolved. They are provided with hooks which attach them- 
selves to the villi, or deeper structures of the intestines. Here 
they are bathed in a well-digested nourishing material until they 
grow to a relatively enormous size and produce from each seg- 
ment of their bodies millions of eggs to pursue a similar struggle 
for existence. What an enormous number of eggs perish because 
they never come into the proper host, what millions of encysted 
pupse die in their calcined cocoons, what thousands pass through 
the intestinal canal without finding a proper place to attach them- 
selves, all that a single mature and sexually perfect tape-worm 
may find a place in which to vegetate and procreate ! What a 
wonderful cycle of existence is this, and what innumerable ages 
must it have required to develop out of the accidental ingestion 
of living independent articulate such a complex and obligate 
parasite ! And what can be said of the parasites of the cat, which 
live the first part of their existence only in the mouse, and of the 
tenias of the dog and wolf, whose cysticercus form is found in 
rabbits. How long did it require these specific forms to develop 
from original generic species f Unfortunately we can never know, 
but we must assume that it has been a very long time. 

The relation of man to the domestic animals furnishes us the 
only approximate measure of the rapidity of these changes. 
Under domestication a few mammals, birds, fishes, insects, mol- 
lusks, and some vegetables have become so modified that they 
cannot be referred to any undomesticated species. How far 


back must man have begun to cultivate the banana, which now is 
seedless and would perish as a species without his care ? Surely 
so long ago that we need some other measure than the century. 
But to have evolved a parasite with such complex and limited 
relations as those of the tenia must have taken a much longer 
time. And how shall we explain the fact that the Temocephala 
chtlensis, a small parasite on the legs of certain fresh-water crusta- 
ceans of Chili, occurs identical in species in the Philippines and 
in Java on other articulates ? Wallace has justly observed that 
such cases ought to be regarded as proof of the hypothesis that 
those types which have occasioned the similarity of remote 
faunas must have had a very long historical duration, persisting, 
very likely, through many geological epochs, 

This, perhaps, calls forcibly enough to our minds the antiquity 
of these forms of parasitism. Let us for a moment consider the 
origin of such forms of parasitism as tuberculosis and the other 
acute and chronic infectious diseases of man and animals. 
While some of them are still under dispute, tuberculosis, syphilis, 
and measles are recognized as entities, and they are considered 
by all fair-minded and unprejudiced scientists and physicians as 
due to distinct and specific parasites. These parasites are, so far 
as we know, specifically different from any non-parasitic organ- 
ism to which they are genetically related. Nor can it for a 
moment be supposed that the parasitic bacteria are in any other 
category in relation to the influence of natural selection than the 
parasites which belong to more highly differentiated orders of life. 
Indeed, the very fact that the lowest and most slowly varying 
vegetables have become obligate parasites is evidence of an asso- 
ciation greater in time than we should consider necessary for the 
evolution of a much more complex relation existing between the 
more rapidly varying articulates or infusoria. 

It appears that the bacillus of tuberculosis is unable to grow 
on any accidental or artificial media under any presumable 
natural conditions of temperature and external surroundings. It 
is able to multiply in man and in some other mammals, and in a 
few related vertebrates. Therefore, we may presume that, should 
it be deprived of a living host even a day beyond the few months 
during which its spores might retain vitality, the species would 
become wholly extinct, and the world would be free ever after- 


wards from the ravages of this dreadful scourge. The bacillus of 
tuberculosis is then an obligate parasite of the warm-blooded 
animals. When we consider what specific difference means, and 
how perfectly the bacillus of tuberculosis manifests this differ- 
ence, and when we see how great is its geographical distribution, 
we are compelled to go back far into the present geological 
epoch, and probably beyond it, for its origin. 

In the bacillus of syphilis we have a still closer obligate para- 
site. It is confined to the Primates alone. All attempts to con- 
vey it from man to animals other than the Quadrumana and to 
artificial media have been equally unsuccessful. Here, then, is a 
peculiar parasite which finds in the intimate structure or other 
bodily conditions of all animals except a limited class such con- 
ditions as are altogether inimical to its reproduction. Since it is 
a parasite of as simple structure, and since it varies as slowly, as 
tuberculosis, we must look still further back into the past for its 
origin in independent forms. 

In measles we have an example of a parasite which is not only 
confined to a single species, but for the most part to the young 
of that species. Perhaps the most unexplainable feature of this 
parasitic disease is the fact that one attack renders the host im- 
mune to subsequent invasion. This fact is phenomenal and, so 
far as I know, wholly without explanation. 

Looking upon these obligate parasites of man as of such 
ancient association, going back beyond the present geological 
epoch for the beginning of syphilis, tuberculosis, measles, scarlet- 
fever, small-pox, whooping-cough, leprosy, and every form of 
tape-worm, how is it possible that man has been able to withstand 
the attacks of so many enemies for so long a time ? The very 
fact that he has survived, and that these parasites are unable to 
exist in any other media than his living body, is conclusive proof 
that they are not essentially destructive parasites ; for with the 
destruction of the host species occurs the destruction of the obli- 
gate parasite. Such a proposition appears to be axiomatic, but 
axioms occasionally need to be formulated. Given abundant 
opportunity of contagion, a destructive obligate parasite is incon- 
ceivable. It is possible only when its destructiveness does not 
interfere with the reproduction of the host species, as after the 
reproduction act has been performed. 


How different from the mild course of syphilis, tuberculosis, 
leprosy, and the acute infectious diseases is that of tetanus, 
anthrax, malignant oedema, and other forms of gangrene and the 
various wound diseases. Among domestic animals, when en- 
couraged by overcrowding and filth, the saprophytic bacteria 
produce equally destructive diseases. Take, for example, Texas 
fever, hog cholera, and ranch-brand. So, too, is it with yellow- 
fever, Asiatic cholera, malaria, and diphtheria, which are doubt- 
less facultative parasites of man. To these rare and accidental 
parasites we have in our skin and mucous membranes a most 
careful and adequate protection. By the action of natural selec- 
tion the door to invasion has been closed, but within we have no 
adequate means of defence ; .so when infection does accidentally 
take place and the usual saprophytes become parasites, the 
chances are greatly against the host in the conflict that ensues. 
The facultative parasites may or they may not be destructive, 
and it is probable that against but few of them has the action 
of natural selection rendered us indurate. 

While we are accustomed to look upon syphilis, tuberculosis, 
and leprosy as excessively destructive diseases, a moment's con- 
sideration is enough to clear our minds of this traditional notion. 
Syphilis, in the strong and healthy Caucasian, frequently runs the 
first and second stages of its course without recognition, and does 
not, therefore, interfere with procreation. When the infirmities 
of age confine the patient to unfavorable surroundings and habits 
of life, the tertiary symptoms come on with the reduced vitality 
and nutrition. Fatal or destructive syphilis in the otherwise well 
and healthy is rare. In children and in poorly nourished young 
people, and in those suffering from chronic diseases, it frequently 
appears as a terminal affection. 

Tuberculosis in the lymph glands of the neck, in the bones and 
joints, in the ear, and even in the peritoneum, is not very de- 
structive. It is frequently followed by recovery. Even in the 
lungs tuberculosis may run a chronic and rather harmless course, 
and interfere very little with the reproduction of the species. It 
is only after pyogenic infection of the tubercular tissues of the 
lungs or other areas that sepsis and symptoms called " hectic " 
appear. This sepsis is then the destructive factor, as it is in 
wound reaction. 


Leprosy is the closest obligate parasite of man so far observed. 
The bacillus of leprosy bears a remarkable morphological relation 
and staining reaction to the prime factors of tuberculosis and 
syphilis. It is almost never a destructive disease, and it appears 
only in those who could have already accomplished the repro- 
ductive act ; therefore it does not interfere with the perpetuation 
of the species. It is conveyed by contact, but only with diffi- 
culty, and there is evidence that it is not necessarily hereditary ; 
that is to say, healthy children may be born of those who are 
suffering from leprosy. The attendants on persons suffering 
from leprosy are not often affected with the disease, but often 
enough to demonstrate its contagiousness. 

In certain of the infectious diseases one attack protects from 
subsequent invasion. This is the case not only with the obligate 
bacterial parasites, but in a greater or less degree with the facul- 
tative parasites. It is interesting to compare the destructive 
power of our principal infectious diseases, the ease of infection, 
and the acquired immunity to succeeding invasion. In measles 
we have a comparatively harmless disease, the greatest ease of 
infection, with subsequent immunity. Scarlet-fever is not so 
harmless, is less contagious, and equally protective. Small-pox is 
more destructive, less contagious, and equally protective. Yellow- 
fever is far more destructive, and far less contagious, and equally 
protective. Leprosy conveys no immunity, for the disease rarely 
terminates in recovery, but the infection is accomplished with 
the greatest difficulty, and the spread of the disease is slow. 
Syphilis is not very destructive, it has a difficult but certain 
method of infection, and one attack does not so surely protect 
against subsequent recurrence. Instances of this kind could 
easily be multiplied, bringing in other factors which act in pro- 
ducing immunity or protection or physiological resistance, all 
brought about by the obvious necessities of the law of the survival 
of the fittest and that of heredity. 

If a few indulgent and patient readers have followed my argu- 
ments to this point, the suggestion of a possible practical appli- 
cation will be redundant. It is obvious that a comprehension of 
these limitations of parasitism would not only direct future 
biological research, but materially assist in suggesting therapeutic 
measures. They also furnish a perspective in which limited data 


may be studied by the side of more complete facts, and they 
offer the greatest promise of a rich harvest in a neglected field 
of thought. 

However we may look upon some of the minor points of this 
argument, or whatever exceptions we may take to the illustrations, 
we may fairly agree upon the following predictions : 

1. All obligate parasites are without exception examples of 
very ancient parasitism, and what is of more practical moment, 
they are necessarily non-destructive to the host species. 

2. The destructive action of the obligate parasites is only 
manifested towards the weaker individuals of the race, and 
therefore they are a factor in the evolution of a strong and wise 
and morally temperate nation.. 

3. The dangerous consequences of secondary infection with 
destructive facultative parasites is emphasized, and the physician 
is taught that as happy results may be expected in the antiseptic 
treatment of the infectious diseases as have followed similar 
indication in the treatment of wounds. 

4. The great field of expectant medicine lies in the treatment 
of diseases due to obligate parasites, while the great field of pre- 
ventive medicine is to be found in providing against infection 
with facultative parasites. 

5. The use of qiiinine in malaria and the efficacy of mercury 
in syphilis will always encourage a careful look-out for specifics 
for other parasitic diseases, especially in those that manifest 
symptoms of infection of the blood-currents. 

6. The artificial immunity to small-pox which is acquired by 
vaccination is suggestive of possibilities which will be applicable 
to all those diseases in which one attack protects from subsequent 

7. Some of the obligate parasites are shared by man with the 
domestic animals, and it is possible, and even probable, that in 
some diseases they are the most frequent source of infection. 
The study of the diseases of animals is indicated, and there can 
be little doubt that it will be followed by a diminution in the 
number of cases of those diseases which are common to man and 
domestic animals. 

8. Conditions which clinically seem to be entitled 'to a single 
place in our nosological catalogue may not be entities or identi- 


ties, and therefore conflicting biological studies of parasitic 
findings in these cases may be harmonized by a re-arrangement 
of our nomenclature. 

9. Alarmists have nothing to fear in new contagious diseases, 
for it is probable that all unrecognized obligate parasites are 
harmless, though perhaps exquisitely contagious or epidemic. 


Few physicians on this continent have had more experi- 
ence with yellow-fever than Dr. Wolfred Nelson, C. M. of 
Quebec. He was for some years a member of the Board of 
Health at Panama, where he had ample opportunities of 
studying the disease in its worst form, and last year he gave 
an outline of his views before the State Medical Society of 
Arkansas, which I shall present to my readers. The paper 
is valuable from a practical point of view, but also as show- 
ing the errors that have been committed by the medical 
faculty and the endorsement of all I have said in preceding 
pages on this terrible disease. 

Dr. Nelson, addressing the President of the Society, said : 

In what follows, I shall refer to my own experience of this 
dread disease at Panama, on the Pacific, and Colon, on the At- 
lantic, both ports of the Isthmus of Panama ; my studies and 
observations on the west coast of Mexico, where I studied and 
traced its epidemics of 1883 and 1884 ; my experience in the hos- 
pitals of Cuba ; and finally my visit to Florida, in the fall of 1887, 
when I deliberately forecast the epidemic that swept Jacksonville 
in 1888. My letter of warning to the people of Florida was 
published in the Times-Union of Jacksonville, November 30, 
1887, and was recalled when the disease was upon them. 

Now, to return to the Isthmus of Panama, where I lived and 
practised from 1880 to 1885. I was back there twice in 1886, and 
twice in 1888, thus, to use an expressive phrase, bringing my 
knowledge down to date. 

The yellow-fever of the Isthmus of Panama I describe thus : 
It is an acute infectious disease, a specific fever, ordinarily not 


contagious ; but under certain atmospheric conditions, not yet 
fully explained, the disease undoubtedly develops contagious 
properties and epidemics result. 

Yellow-fever is ushered in in a variety of ways. It may be 
preceded by languor or malaise. The invasion may be abrupt. 
Generally characterized by a chill, often very severe, lasting one, 
two, or three hours ; the duration of the chill having a marked 
significance, severe chills marking nearly all fatal cases. Again, 
the disease may be ushered in by sudden nausea and faintness, 
without any warning, as in my own case during the Isthmian 
epidemic of 1880. Headache is always met with. I know of no 
exception to this statement. Frontal headache, a flushed face, 
and gastric irritability in new-comers within the yellow-fever 
zone, is always very suspicious, a fact specially referred to in Dr. 
Belot's admirable book, " La Fievre Jaune a La Havane." Gen- 
erally the headache is frontal ; it may be bi-parietal and occa- 
sionally occipito-frontal, but, to repeat, marked headache always. 
In dealing with specific yellow-fever of the Isthmus of Panama, 
which, if respectability depends on its antiquity, is the oldest, 
most respectable, and fatal variety known a history of constipa- 
tion obtains in nearly all cases. I can recall but a single case as 
an exception to this well-known rule, and it was a case in my 
practice where the disease had been preceded by a malarial 
diarrhoea. No condition of health gives immunity. It aims 
at all, be they healthy or unhealthy. It has a specific role. From 
early youth to advanced age it pursues its death-dealing mission. 
It is true that the mortality among children is less than at puberty 
and beyond. Pains in the legs and sacral region, the latter often 
intense and agonizing. I shall never forget my own experience. 
It seemed as,if a legion of fiends were trying to dig out if I may 
use the expression my sacrum with red-hot pincers. The pain 
is excruciating and indescribable. In the majority of patients, 
the face was red, just like the face is in scarlet-fever the boiled- 
lobster color. The eyes at first were clear, providing that there 
had been no antecedent hepatic disease ; later they became suf- 
fused, injected. The skin was hot and dry. In many cases a 
peculiar biting heat was felt (like the calormordax of pneumonia). 
It produced a strange sensation, resembling a current of electri- 
city playing over the extended head. Pulse hard and slow, 


varying from sixty-five to eighty. Temperature, first stage, 100 
to 103 ; where the cases proved fatal, in the first stage, rising to 
104, 106, and 107, the latter being the highest temperature 
noted by me in my practice ; to fall slightly just before death. In 
the second stage, or " period of calm," as it is termed, it feels 
a remission only. At the beginning of the third stage, or the 
stage of " secondary fever," it rises again. Respiration, as one 
would expect during the "hot stages," is hurried. At times 
a peculiar moaning respiration of indescribable sadness. It fills 
the room and the vicinity. The respirations varied from thirty to 
forty per minute, and at the close of the third stage fifty to sixty, 
becoming less with the fall of the temperature just before death. 
Great thirst, nothing appeases it. Restlessness, no position 
giving any ease. Urine, at invasion, normal but high-colored. 
In the majority of cases on the Isthmus of Panama the patient 
died during the first stage, such was the blood-destroying inten- 
sity of the disease when all, or nearly all, of the symptoms 
detailed and to be detailed, appeared. They do not appear in any 
stated order. 

Within twenty-four hours of invasion all the symptoms are in- 
tensified. Sacral pain and headache increasing ; gastric disturb- 
ance and epigastric tenderness developing early in many cases, 
the slightest pressure over the stomach causing intense pain and 
eliciting sharp cries. In cases where the brain symptoms were 
very marked, in some where patients were unconscious, the 
slightest pressure produced a contortion of the face and body, 
If deep-seated pressure was made they writhed on their beds, but 
the instant that it was removed they became quiet again. Next, 
nausea and vomiting, at first a clear fluid, well named " white 
vomit " by Surgeon-General Blair, of British Guiana, South 
America. Tongue at first slightly coated. I am dealing with 
complicated cases. In patients who had suffered from intermit- 
tents, or bilious remittents, what is termed the characteristic 
tongue of yellow-fever was not found. As stated it was slightly 
furred, later the fur increases from behind forward, the tips and 
edges take on a deep red. Gums also become a fiery red, also 
the mucous membrane of the mouth and throat. The whole 
mucous tract suffers. Later, in. the majority of cases, sore throat 
is complained of, due to stripping of the mucous membrane. 


Blood oozes from the denuded tongue and gums, giving an inde- 
scribable fetor to the breath ; at times it collects on the teeth. In 
some cases a peculiar and characteristic odor is exhaled from the 
patient's body. Once recognized, it never will be forgotten. It 
somewhat resembles Vodeur du cadavre of French authors. The 
late Dr. Stone of Louisiana was the first American writer, I 
believe, to recognize it. As he states, it is a very bad omen. 

When patients die in the first stage, the urine always shows 
a large amount of albumen. The temperature remains high, 104 
to 107 F. Delirium, often quiet, marks the latter temperature. 
In some cases extending over more time beyond the fourth or 
fifth day the albumen does not appear until the close of the 
seconder the beginning of the third stage. Albumen is a sine qua 
non. I know of no yellow-fever without it, nor do any of my 
many friends practising within the tropics. It never was absent 
in Isthmian cases. I never have seen or heard of a case of 
specific yellow-fever without it ; never, either in the practice of Dr. 
L. Girerd, late Surgeon-in-Chief Panama Canal Company, in that 
of Dr. Didier, of the same service, or in the cases seen by my 
brother, the late Dr. George W. Nelson, at one time my partner, 
and later Resident Surgeon at the Canal Hospitals, HuertaGalla, 
Panama, giving a combined experience of hundreds and hundreds 
of cases. During an epidemic at Colon, in the fall of 1883, it 
swept the shipping, over one hundred and fifty cases, nearly all 
fatal. Again albumen in all cases. Suppression of urine is a 
late, and generally among the last symptoms. Where it is 
marked, they seldom recover. The bowels, if freely acted upon 
by the sulphate of soda, to be referred to, may not furnish any 
early information, diarrhoeal motions produced by the soda being 
followed by "black-vomit motions" in many fatal cases. These 
motions may precede or follow black vomit. No rule is absolute, 
or such material, well named, may only be seen at the autopsy. 
Black vomit follows the constant retching and the " white vomit " 
of Blair. Black vomit is happily named, and shows innumerable 
fine particles or flocculi named black vomit or " coffee-ground 
vomit," or the marc de caftfoi the French writers, whose books on 
yellow-fever are among the latest and very best. Frequently 
patients, without the slightest warning, commence violent vomit- 
ing. It pours forth from mouth and nostrils, often threatening to 


choke them. I have seen a patient resting quietly on his back 
after the subsidence of the gnawing sacral pain, when a perfect 
flood of black vomit has spurted from his mouth and nostrils up 
into the air, over bedding, mosquito curtains, and the nurse. An 
old and intelligent writer on yellow-fever, Dr. Dowell, has been 
singularly happy in his remark, that it is/<?r saltum. So it is. 

Here, I must pause and divide my yellow-fever cases into two 
classes, and shall state that such are met on the Isthmus of 
Panama. One class I took the liberty of naming " uncompli- 
cated," the other "cgmplicated." By uncomplicated, I mean the 
disease occurring in new-comers. In these, brain symptoms and 
delirium were common. Such, almost without the classic excep- 
tion, died. I never knew one to recover. The possession of full 
health meant rich blood and a better culture-fluid for the germs 
that destroy it the absolute destruction of the blood being but a 
matter of three or four days. I can best illustrate this by a case 
in the practice of my valued friend, Dr. L. Girerd, to-day a retired 
practitioner living in Paris. In the case referred to, on the fourth 
day of the disease, he failed to get a single red corpuscle in the 
blood not one. The heart was driving a fluid through the ves- 
sels one incapable of nourishing the brain tissues. A fluid wholly 
devoid of the life-sustaining oxygen carried by the red corpuscles. 
His crucial microscopic work revealed a fluid, and in it the debris 
of corpuscles ; or, to use the old-time word that I have applied 
to this condition in yellow-fever, a necremia, or death of the 
blood. His patient, a titled foreigner, a magnificent specimen of 
manhood, who stood six feet four inches in his stockings, died a 
few hours later. The " complicated " cases occurred in those 
who had been on the Isthmus from six months to sixteen years, 
and of course were profoundly malarious. I say of course, as no 
man, woman, or child there escapes intense paludal poisoning. 
Sixteen years had failed to give the so-called acclimation to 
an American, Captain Dean. Specific yellow-fever cut him off ; 
he was my. patient. An elderly Italian, M. Georgetti, after 
thirty-seven years' residence at Panama, died of specific yellow- 
fever. I personally know a French gentleman in Guaymas, Mexico, 
who has spent over forty years on both coasts of Mexico. He 
went through epidemic after epidemic unscathed, but in the 
thirty-sixth year of his residence, after .passing through the 


Guaymas epidemic of 1883, he came down with the disease 
in 1884, when a few cases appeared, as is usual following all epi- 
demics within the tropics, and just escaped dying. He in person 
related his experience to me. Acclimation is only so-called ; it is a 
myth, but quite in keeping with a lot of our gross ignorance regard- 
ing yellow-fever. Nothing, absolutely nothing, protects against 
specific yellow-fever, except having had the disease, a fact well 
known to all close students of the disease within the tropics. 

With this digression as a preparatory statement I shall next 
consider the second stage, or " period of calm," as it is termed. 
There is a marked fall of temperature, but merely a remission, 
and most deceptive and dangerous it is. I can best illustrate this 
by actual cases. In two cases, both mine, during the epidemic of 
1880 ; new arrivals ; just married ; he a Frenchman and Consul 
for France ; she a Portuguese, aged seventeen. They had passed 
the first stage. His temperature had run up to 106 F., hers to 
105 F. Then came the deceptive " period of calm ; " they felt 
so well that, despite my emphatic orders, they got up and walked 
about. He was in one room and she in another. In the woman's 
case, the secondary fever came on that night, together with a 
copious "vaginal hemorrhage," practically the equivalent of black 
vomit. She died within twelve hours of her walking about her 
rooms. His temperature again ran up. He died the next day. 
She, poor girl, was laid out in her wedding finery. They occupy 
a single grave in the Foreign Cemetery at Panama. Such, gen- 
tlemen, is malignant yellow-fever as I know it. 

As I have stated, yellow-fever may be a disease of a single 
" access " or paroxysm. When it is so, the patient dies or enters 
on convalescence, such being the milder cases in Panama. Thus, 
it resolves itself into a sharp, clearly defined fever of a single 
paroxysm, or "access," as the French so expressively term it. 
As nearly all attacked died, the milder cases were the exceptions. 
In the great majority the " period of calm " was deceptive, 
the slightest imprudence on the part of the patient ending in 
death later, the remission I have seen the temperature as low as 
99 F. lasting from twenty-four to thirty-six hours ; in cases 
marked by long chills, but twenty-four hours to merge into the 
third stage of the disease, or that of "secondary fev^r." I have 
faced three epidemics of small-pox, one at home in Montreal, and 



two at Panama. The severe chills in that disease, initiating the 
severe and confluent cases, the high primary fever, the second 
stage, to merge into the high temperature of the secondary fever, 
consequent blood changes, and death. These cases, so familiar 
to me, have caused much thinking in connection with my studies 
in yellow-fever and its blood changes. In a fatal case of conflu- 
ent small-pox at Panama, without the slightest warning, I have 
seen a fluid that to the eyes was identical with black vomit, spurt 
from the mouth, high in air, over every thing, staining the bed- 
ding just like black vomit ; it was per saltum. To our life- 
currents we must look for information. 

In the " third stage " the albumen appears, that is, if absent at 
close of "period of calm," it is invariably met here. Black 
vomit and black- vomit motions, suppression of urine, brain symp- 
toms, etc., in cases ending fatally in this stage, all the symptoms, 
crowd each other, and death closes the scene. 

In " uncomplicated " cases, or where violent delirium may be 
met, many painful scenes result. A young Englishman, the pic- 
ture of health, as attested by his magnificent physique and rosy 
cheeks, was stricken on landing. He was my patient. The case 
closed with furious delirium. Four men had to take turns in 
holding him, until death closed one of the saddest of sights. 

A few remarks regarding the " fever of acclimation " of some 
writers. This, mark you, is generally preceded by a slight chill, 
a rapid pulse, a flushed face, suffused eyes, with a trace of albu- 
men in the urine in a word, it is a very, very mild form of yellow- 
fever, the febrile movement lasting twenty-four to thirty-six hours, 
the mildest type of an " access." Failing a trace of albumen, it 
is not a fever of acclimation that is, to a tropical physician 
and without the other symptoms, no subsequent protection may 
be expected. In fact, some profound students of the disease 
within the tropics consider it but a temporary protection ; that 
in seasons of epidemic, while such are exposed in a lesser degree 
still they are liable to contract the severe type. 

Such, briefly told, is yellow-fever on the Isthmus of Panama. 
1 have seen and attended it, in both cities, Colon and Panama. 
I wish to add that it and other tropical diseases have caused, at 
a low estimate, fully twenty thousand deaths on the line of the 
Panama Canal. The New York World, of May 18, 1889, credits 


the French Consul at Colon with saying that fifteen thousand 
Frenchmen have died. This probably is a mistake. I believe 
twenty thousand, all told, will be a generous estimate. The 
heaviest dying known to me was in 1884, during that epidemic 
at Colon, in the shipping and on the Isthmus. In an article in 
Harper s Weekly, of July 4, 1885, 1 placed the death-rate for that 
month at six hundred and fifty-three officers and men of the Canal 
Company. I obtained the figures from an inside source. The 
Canal Company's statements, as published in Le Bulletin du Canal 
Interoceanique, were as mendacious as they were misleading. De 
Lesseps' last ditch, that absurd creation of a man in his second 
childhood, has cost twenty thousand lives, over $200,000,000 in 
gold, has ruined hundreds of thousands of petty investors in 
France. Up to the hour of the crash, De Lesseps in person, 
while knowing the full truth, unblushingly told his fictions. 
Since 1884 he has known the whole truth. He is a wicked old 
man, who should be buried alive under his fictions. 

Many of our confreres have fallen in the Isthmus. Some noble 
fellows are buried there yellow-fever, dysentery, and pernicious 
fever. Yellow-fever must be seen and studied in its own habitats. 
The Isthmus is one of the earliest. 

My visit to Tampa, in November, 1887, impressed me in many 
ways, but what greatly interested me was to hear of cases of non- 
albuminuric yellow-fever. These cases of so-called yellow-fever, I 
believe, furnish that class of people who have had yellow-fever 
two and three times. As may be inferred, I have no faith in any 
yellow-fever without the invariable presence of albumen in the 
urine. I have yet to meet with or read of a well-authenticated 
case of secondary yellow-fever. Nor do I know a single physi- 
cian who has seen one. 

Now I come to the subject of treatment ; and here I most em- 
phatically state that yellow-fever has no treatment properly so- 
called. The host of so-called treatments justify my statement. 
How can a disease, according to the old view, characterized by 
the symptoms described by me, have one ? Four centuries seem 
to have taught the profession nothing, or next to it. All that has 
been known with absolute certainty is that people got yellow- 
fever and died ; the world heard of the dying, and that from 
Cuba it makes periodic invasions of the Sunny South. The treat- 


ment of yellow-fever is purely symptomatic, my early treatment 
up to 1884, and was that of the " Old School." May God forgive 
it for its ignorance and charlatanism ! Many authors have made 
a rtchaufft, or rehash, of the experience of others, they never 
having seen a case themselves. They are responsible for much 
ignorance, // not worse. Having tried all the so-called orthodox 
treatments, I, previous to the fall of 1884, settled on the follow- 
ing : On being called to see a patient at the outset, I played a 
trump card and made quinine the diagnostic agent. We must 
bear in mind that a few hours in such cases may mean a life 
saved or lost. The following was the mixture : 

5 Quin. sulph 3 j. 

Acid, sulph. dil. , B. Phar 3 ij. 

Sodas sulph j. 

Tinct. Card, co 3 ij. 

Aq ad viij. 

Misce fiat mistura. Sig. : Take a quarter at once and repeat in two hours. 

This mixture, given French fashion, in potions, or portions, 
well diluted with water, made a perfect solution and was readily 
absorbed. It was my " multicharge gun." It gave me the best 
results. Hot baths. Pilocarpine in one case, aconite, etc., were 
in order, to produce free action of the skin. If the cases were 
purely malarial, the quinine and sulphate of soda met all 
the indications. The sulphate of soda acts like a charm, 
free, bilious motions following. Every dose contained fifteen 
grains of quinine and two drams of sulphate of soda. If 
after two doses the temperature remained high, 100 and up- 
ward, with the usual symptoms, yellow-fever was the verdict. 
Valuable time had been saved ; the bowels freely acted upon, a 
most important indication. Later, I added to this treatment the 
following : A phosphoric-acid mixture every hour or two, largely 
diluted with water ; gave it and it only, purposely to bring about 
an acid condition of the blood. In a few words to make it 
wholly uninhabitable to the germs. I adopted this course only 
after serious thought, and said to a medical friend : " My next 
patient with yellow-fever gets well or dies on phosphoric acid." 
I explained it to two friends, Dr. L. Girerd and Dr. Arthur Gore, 
who saw my cases ; also to Dr. Bransford, United States Navy, 


who crossed the Isthmus on his way to Nicaragua. Previous to 
my adoption of this purely acid treatment, following the quinine- 
and-soda mixture, my patients kept on dying in a way that was 
simply appalling. Not that I lost more than my confreres. Our 
helplessness dazed me. As stated, after mature deliberation, I 
settled on phosphoric acid, well diluted, for life or death. Three 
cases so treated, all in succession, got well, an absolutely unheard 
of thing there. I had friends see them, knowing as I do what 
unbelief and professional jealousy will do. My reasoning was 
sound. The acid did not destroy the oxygen-bearing function of 
the red corpuscles, while the germs of the yellow-fever did, and 
so killed my patients. By rendering the blood acid these germs 
could not live and reproduce. They were destroyed in situ and 
the blood ceased to be a culture-fluid. Any student of medicine 
familiar with bacilli and their cultures, knows full well that even 
faintly acid solutions are fatal to the propagation of bacilli. Such 
was my reasoning as far back as 1884. I have the notes on those 
cases, taking full notes on all, as I had been taught to do while a 
student at the Montreal General Hospital, 1868-72. 

The blood is the habitat of the germs of yellow-fever. When 
my first case in the series of three demanded my attention, alas ! 
I could not procure a reliable phosphoric acid, when I had to fall 
back on a formula published on p. 93 " United States Dispen- 
satory," being that proposed by Mr. James T. Shinn, American 
Journal of Pharmacy, October, 1880, thus : Liquor Acidi Phos- 
phorici. A similar preparation, under the name of Horsford's Acid 
Phosphate, has a large use in this country. The formula is as 
follows : Liquor Acidi Phosphorici (without iron) ; Calcii phos- 
phat., 384 grains ; Magnesii phosphat., 256 grains ; Potassii 
phosphat., 192 grains ; Acidi phosphorici (60 per cent.), 640 
minims ; Aq., q. s. to make a pint." As stated, not being able to 
procure a reliable phosphoric acid, I was forced to use Hors- 
ford's Acid Phosphate. It, as I knew, was a standard prepara- 
tion of uniform strength and excellence. I strongly object to 
employing a patent preparation, so to speak. Its contents or 
make-up was known, and it was " Hobson's choice." The prep- 
aration did all that I anticipated, and I give its formula as found 
in the " United States Dispensatory." I knew what I used. It 
is essentially a strong acid mixture. 


To repeat, having given my quinine and sulphate-of-soda mix- 
ture, thus securing free motions from the bowels, the malarial 
element being eliminated by the non-effect of the quinine ; I then 
treated for yellow-fever, thus : To bring about free action of the 
hot and burning skin was absolutely necessary. As stated at first, 
I tried hot baths, aconite, etc., and abandoned them, using a 
simpler and more effective means, in a vapor-bath, named in 
Peru as " Dr. Wilson's treatment," being that of an English 
physician who used it with great success during an epidemic 
there in 1854, and later. The patient was placed on a chair 
one with a wooden seat all clothing being removed ; he was 
covered with blankets tucked in closely under the chin. A spirit- 
lamp was lit and placed under the chair, thus furnishing heat and 
vapor. To Dr. Wilson's vapor-bath I added a foot-bath, all un- 
der the blankets, the water as hot as the patient could bear it. 
Finally I grafted on some Jamaican treatment, giving a pint of 
hot lemonade or orange-leaf tea. Under this triad, a profuse 
perspiration followed, usually within ten minutes ; it fairly ran 
off them. As soon as it was freely established they felt better. 
The scarlet hue of the face faded. The hard pulse became softer. 
If the bath caused faintness, that was guarded against by a shorter 
exposure. With this I had no unpleasant symptoms, but with 
nitrate of pilocarpine, profound pallor and faintness in a well- 
nourished man caused me alarm. I tried it in but a single case, 
and that was previous to my knowing of Wilson's vapor-bath. 
The necessary exposure being made, ten to fifteen or twenty min- 
utes, the patient stood up, the chair was slipped from below the 
blankets, and he was lifted into bed en masse to prevent any 
escape of heat or moisture. More blankets were put over him. 
In some cases the perspiring lasted one or two hours, to the 
marked relief of the patient and the lessening of all the symptoms. 
After a variable time, the skin again became hot and dry, when 
the same procedure was repeated, as often as necessary. Thus, 
two highly important indications were met at the very outset. 
First, under the quinine and soda, free motions from the bowels 
were secured ; remember the marked constipation in these cases, 
often extending over three or four days, while the man had been 
eating as usual. Secondly, full and free action of the skin. Ac- 
cording to my way of thinking and reasoning, the patient was 


placed under the most favorable conditions for fighting the dis- 
ease. Generally large quantities of fecal matter were voided, 
and the pores were thoroughly opened. Next, the rest of the 
treatment was in order. It was of the simplest. A teaspoonful 
of the acid phosphate in half tumbler of water, every hour or 
two, day and night, for the first twenty-four hours. It never 
caused nausea. I continued it for two or three days, according 
to temperature of patient and symptoms. The bowels continued 
to act freely bilious motions. Later they became very dark under 
the acid. Previously I had used sinapisms and a lot of things 
recommended by the books, and those supposed to be experi- 
enced in treating the disease. The sinapisms were placed over 
the stomach to try and check the distressing vomiting. At times 
they were beneficial ; again useless. Diet in these cases is a 
matter of very small importance. They were too busy with the 
disease. I fail to recall a single case where food of any kind was 
asked for. The highly irritable stomach must be remembered. 
Iced milk and beef broth in very small quantities, at frequent in- 
tervals, if the stomach tolerates them. Iced lemonade and pure 
soda water. Small pieces of ice allowed to dissolve in the mouth. 
I gave champagne a fair trial, and abandoned it. I am satisfied 
that the purely acid treatment is ample. The simpler the treat- 
ment the better. The quinine and sulphate-of-soda mixture, 
vapor-baths a la Wilson, and the acid meet all requirements. I 
abandoned the old-time treatment. As I have already informed 
you, I had three recoveries, one after the other, all in infected 
premises where the previously attacked had died. These recoveries 
were in the fall of 1884. Early in the spring of 1885 March I 
left for my annual holiday, visiting Nicaragua, when I returned to 
the Isthmus, to lesve it, April 25th, for New York City. 

Three swallows do not make a summer, nor do I claim that 
three successive recoveries are every thing ; but as nearly all 
attacked died, I do earnestly claim that three successive cases 
getting well furnish food for thought. Personally I am satisfied 
that by persistently acidulating the life-currents they ceased to 
be blood-heat culture-fluids for the germs of yellow-fever. I say 
germs. The following facts, I believe, will strengthen my claim 
that three successive recoveries were absolutely unheard of at 
Panama. A few words regarding the dying from yellow-fever 


thereaway. I can recall twenty-seven admissions to the yellow- 
fever ward of the Canal Hospitals, Panama, with but a single 
recovery. My brother, the late Dr. George W. Nelson, then 
resident surgeon, furnished me with the figures. Of forty-two 
cases sent to the Charity Hospital, Panama, during the epidemic 
of 1880, when I had the disease, not a single recovery. As a 
concluding statement, I could amplify them to any extent the 
Dingier expedition. Mr. Dingier and Mrs. Dingier, accompanied 
by Mr. and Miss Dingier, and a party of canal engineers all 
told, a party of thirty-three arrived at Colon in October, 1883, 
Mr. Dingier being the new Director-General of the canal works. 
Within six weeks of landing Count de Cuerno and Mr. Zimmer- 
man were dead specific yellow-fever. Within fifteen months of 
the landing of that party of thirty-three, fourteen had had yellow- 
fever, and but one recovered, Mr. Dingier losing his wife, son, 
and daughter. He was very patient, and had been on the Isthmus 
previously. His regular life, no doubt, was the factor that saved 
him. Contrast three successive recoveries with the above my 
cases were specific yellow-fever. 

As previously intimated, yellow-fever spares none. While it is 
quite true that total abstainers have been swept away by it, it is 
equally true that, even in the severest cases, they have recovered, 
where the moderate drinker was lost from the start. Time and 
again, my own experience has confirmed this. The regular life, 
particularly within the tropics, is its own reward. In " Ziemssen's 
Enclyclopsedia," vol. ii., in the article on yellow-fever, much valua- 
ble information will be found on this very subject the value of 
total abstinence. " Panama in 1855," Harper Bros., New York. 
"The Handbook of Panama Railway," 1860, Dr. Otis, Harper 
Bros. Dr. L. Girerd's work on " Panama," published in 1883, in 
French, in Paris. All contain much information regarding that 
land of pestilence and death, as well as " Five Years in Panama," 
1889, Belford, Clarke, & Co., New York. 

In reference to the inestimable benefits of total abstinence 
within the tropics, it simply confirms the opinion of a valued 
friend at Panama, the Consul-General of the United States, who, 
when asked, " How do you live in the tropics ? " wittily replied : 
" It all depends on the liver" So it does. An alcoholic liver in 
yellow-fever means death. 


The time allowed for the reading of this paper necessitates my 
leaving out much that I should like to discuss. I must ignore the 
interesting history of the disease and hasten on. 

A few words or points on the after-treatment. The treatment 
during convalescence calls for constant watchfulness. It is here 
that malarial symptoms crop up in the cases of those who have 
been at Panama a few months. Dr. L. Girerd examined the 
blood of hundreds on arrival, and found it normal, in no case 
showing the malarial bacillus. After the first month he re- 
examined scores of them ; the blood of all these showed it, 
simply confirming the statements to be found in Dr. Tomes' 
work, " Panama in 1855," statements amplified in Dr. L. Girerd's 

To return to the stage of convalescence. I have known a beef- 
steak to cause death on the tenth day. During convalescence 
such patients are simply ravenous. Well do I recall my own in- 
tense hunger. Slops are in order, fluid food, given at short inter- 
vals, not to overload the stomach. Its irritability lasts for weeks 
and weeks. Bathing, a thorough washing of the patient's body 
and hair daily in a weak carbolic bath, the thorough disinfection 
of the patient's effects and room. 

The majority of cases were fatal on or before the fifth day, 
closing with black vomit, suppression of the urine, etc. In such 
patients it was a fever of single " access," or paroxysm. Other 
cases passed through the " period of calm " and died in the third 
stage, or that of " secondary fever," from the sixth to the ninth 
day. Cases of a typhoid character were rare. I saw but one, 
being that of my friend Dr. Arthur Gore, now in San Francisco, 

The sequelae : Boils, pimples, parotid swellings, and intermit- 
tent fever. Jaundice It was of a rich canary color. It lasted 
a whole month. People were never curious about it, or anxious 
to ask me questions not any. 

Now for a very brief reference to post-mortem appearances. 
My small experience under this heading simply confirms what 
an old and clear-headed American writer has stated : " Yellow- 
fever has no pathology." I refer to Dr. Grenville Dowell, whose 
little brochure contains a mine of information, or what the great 
French undertaker, M. de Lesseps, calls " an arsenal of facts." 


The post-mortem findings are so variable in patients cut off by 
the same symptoms that no reliance can be placed upon them. 
I deem it a blood disease, pure and simple, and if my view is 
accepted, absence of any marked pathological changes, save in 
the blood itself, must be expected. 

The liver : It presented a variety of conditions. I have found 
it fatty ; again, fatty on section, showing an immense quantity of 
oil-globules ; again, perfectly normal in size and color. The 
chamois-colored liver is supposed to be the characteristic liver. 
I never saw but one, and it was the only one found in nearly 
one hundred autopsies made at the Canal Hospitals, Panama, 
by Dr. S. Didier, a gentleman profoundly versed in yellow fever. 
He was born in one of its habitats, the island of Martinique, 
French West Indies. 

The kidneys : Nothing constant. I met them large and small ; 
again, perfectly normal to the eye. 

The stomach : This organ presented signs of acute inflamma- 
tion. Generally its coats were thickened ; it contained more or 
less black vomit ; I saw nearly a pint in one case ; its inner sur- 
face showing innumerable pink points or foci of congestion, and 
small deposits of blood. Dr. Castellanos, a physician to the 
Charity Hospital, Panama, a Spaniard, and formerly a hospital 
surgeon in Cuba, told me that it was the only constant condition 
found by him, and he, while there in Cuba, had made nearly one 
hundred and fifty autopsies. 

The brain I never examined. Dr. L. Didier found nothing 
worthy of remark in his large experience. Nothing. 

The blood : I always found it in a perfectly fluid condition. 
Remember the destruction of the corpuscles and the great 
amount of albumen eliminated by the kidneys. Its specific gravity, 
taken by me two hours after death, was nearly normal. To this 
fluid we must direct our whole attention. To repeat, I deem it a 
blood disease, pure and simple, and have held this view since 
1884. Death in these cases is due to a true necraemia. If this 
view, which I believe is peculiar to myself, be proven, we have 
an explanation of the majority of symptoms of yellow fever, and, 
as already stated, it explains the absence of any characteristic 
pathological changes, save in the blood itself. 

The brain symptoms are due purely and simply to the destine- 


tion of our oxygen carriers, the red corpuscles. The great Vir- 
chow attributes loss of consciousness to their failure to carry 
oxygen. By rendering the blood uninhabitable to the germs 
that prey upon and destroy the corpuscles, we triumph. Much 
remains to be explained about yellow-fever. Many honest and 
patient toilers are at work on this great problem. I believe that 
with the discovery of the specific germ by Dr. Domingo Freire, 
of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil ; by Dr. L. Girerd, at Panama, and its 
discovery by Dr. Carlos Findlay, in Havana ; to his and the work 
of his friend, 'Dr. Delgado, of that city ; add to this our knowl- 
edge of the truly wonderful strides made by these gentlemen in 
their bacteriological studies and inoculations ; to the above, by 
acidulating the blood, as I have done, where it has invaded the 
system : with such factors the future seems full of hope to me. 
May it prove so. Having digressed, I must get back to faz post- 
mortem findings. 

The bladder : Generally a few drachms of highly albuminous 
urine were found. Remember the suppression. 

Black vomit has a peculiar odor, and is slightly acid to the 
taste. To clear up a vexed point in my mind, I collected some 
in one of my cases and tasted it. It required a little courage, 
but I was in earnest and working for results. I may state, inter 
alia, that it will never compete favorably with other beverages. 
The "vomit," on settling, deposits coffee-ground "particles," the 
fluid above being the color of weak black tea. Black vomit is 
not bilious vomit. I tasted it to clear up this very point. Black 
vomit, as a symptom, is of grave import. It indicates advanced 
blood-changes, the beginning of the necraemia. While at Panama 
I sent friends specimens of my late patients. My rooms were 
miniature graveyards. Some "black vomit" sent to my old 
classmate, Dr. William Osier, then Professor of Clinical Medicine 
in the University of Pennsylvania, with other material, furnished 
pabulum for a lecture on " Vomited Matters." To-day he is Pro- 
fessor of Practice of Medicine in the Johns Hopkins University, 
Baltimore, Md., and Physician-in-Chief to the magnificent hospi- 
tal of the same name. 

To recapitulate : Now that Drs. Freire, Girerd, Findlay, and 
Delgado have found the same germ, Dr. Domingo Freire being 
the first investigator and its discoverer, to him the honor and 


credit are due. He caused others to work. Now that this has 
been accomplished, I firmly believe a new era is at hand, and 
that soon this constant reproach to our profession and much- 
vaunted modern civilization, the sway of yellow-fever, is about to 
receive its coup fie grdce. Inoculation will protect man against 
this awful disease as vaccine does against small-pox. Dr. L. 
Girerd proved his good faith in such a vaccine, if the term is 
permissible, by making attenuated cultures of the microbes of 
specific yellow-fever, and by inoculating himself ; and without 
carrying it to the full protective influence, he allowed himself to 
be bitten by mosquitoes (Dr. Carlos Findlay's discovery) that had 
been feeding on a man in the yellow-fever ward of the Canal 
Hospital, a case of specific yellow-fever ; the fifth day the mos- 
quitoes were disturbed and allowed to bite him. The result was 
a mild yellow-fever. I translated his report, and it was pub- 
lished in the Canada Medical Record, Montreal, in the fall of 
1886, together with an editorial. 


Professor J. Forster of Amsterdam has published ( Weekbladv. 
Niederland Tijdschrift v. Geneeskunde) an account of some inves- 
tigations made in his laboratory by himself and Herr de Freytag, 
having for their object the determination of the effect of the 
common process of salting or pickling meat on various forms of 
bacteria. It was found that cholera bacilli were soon destroyed 
under the influence of abundance of salt, usually in a few hours ; 
but that typhoid bacilli, pyogenic staphylococci, the streptococci 
of erysipelas, and the bacilli of porcine infectious diseases fre- 
quently retained their vitality for several weeks, or even months, 
in spite of the presence of abundance of salt. The same was 
also true of the bacilli of tubercle. In some cases these bacilli 
were found alive after being two months in pickle, their vitality 
being proved by their capacity for infecting new cultures. Por- 
tions of the viscera of a tuberculous animal, preserved for a con- 
siderable time in salt, were found capable of causing tuberculosis 
in a healthy animal when introduced into its peritoneal cavity. 
Experiments on the spleen of an animal which had died of malig- 


nant anthrax showed that salt possessed the power of destroying 
the bacilli of this disease in about eighteen hours. These, as 
well as cholera bacilli, were found to require seven and one half 
per cent, of salt to destroy them. From these facts it would 
appear that salting or pickling has but little destructive effect on 
many of the more common forms of bacilli liable to be found in 
diseased meat. 


A Baboo in India applied to a gentleman for an appoint- 
ment worth not more than a trifle of twenty-five rupees 
a month, and as a proof of his qualification for the position 
he was required to write an essay on influenza. A copy of 
his composition reaches me as these pages are in the printer's 
hands and it will be found of interest in more ways than one. 
It reads thus : 

" Sir, As I am requested by your honour to write an essay on 
influenza, all I can say is that this Infernal Epidemic, which has 
fallen on our mother country like a great calamity, is caused by 
the concentrated efforts of minute bacus of the animalculae tribe 
of unforeseen microscopical animal life. Like the old plagues of 
Egypt, it is deteriorating in the extreme, carrying its venomous 
degenerating contamination through every household families, 
not excepting your humble servant, who has suffered too much 
the details of fever in its augmented state with a pertinacity that 
would have done the heart of Euscapalius good to have inter- 
vieud. Notwithstanding, nevertheless, I am now all square, your 
honour, enjoying salubrity of heath hence my ability to write this 
hard subject matter. Although this infernal, inhuman disease, is 
not dangerous except for the old decrepid one foot in the grave 
sort of paralytic people, yet is frought with too great after conse- 
quences, such as Pneumonia, Bronchitis, Catarrh, et hoc genus 
omne (you see I am versed in few Latin terms) causing thereby 
some care to be taken with ourselves afterwards. It is great 
great pity your honour asked me to write such kind of great 
difficult, inexperienced task, no B.A., I am sure, would be spritely 
enough to attempt to undertake such eccentric task without pur- 


loining his intellectual faculties to the utmost tension. Your 
honour will kindly excuse my writing to a greater length, although 
I could give much information on the statistic of this great and 
downfelling disease on bed with all items of fever and nose run- 
ning all day and night my wife is still suffering, but I am earn- 
estly working the oracle with the Gods to minimise the malady by 
giving alms and all things to poor helpless beggars asking much, 
from your humble servant who is at present greatly impecunious 
from want of job, two children besides wife and myself to feed 
and one more child coming soon yet unborn owing to wife's 
fault. Hoping to be favoured by your kind consideration." 


The remarks that I found it necessary to make in the 
earlier pages on this subject present nothing more than the 
opinions of the best members of the medical profession. It 
is admitted on all sides thiat young men are given the degree 
of M.D. who are utterly incompetent to practise medicine. 
Many of them are deficient in all the qualities that go to 
make a gentleman, and if there be any occupation where 
these qualities are essential, it surely is in the man who as 
physician or surgeon has access to our homes and is en- 
trusted with the inmost secrets of the family. The majority 
of those who gain admission at the medical schools are also 
sadly deficient in the groundwork of even an ordinary educa- 
tion. They have little or no classical knowledge, although 
that is of the utmost importance, and their general informa- 
tion is of the scantiest and most superficial kind. As a 
necessary consequence of this their minds are narrowed, 
their realm of thought is restricted, and much of their think- 
ing is perfunctory. They go forth into the world when they 
receive their diploma not only unfit to be entrusted with the 
delicate and responsible duties of a physician, but unqualified 
even to be granted permission to begin the study of it. Very 
few of them can write a prescription accurately, and scarcely 
any know enough of the effects of drugs and of their reactions 


when combined to be able to prepare a formula that is un- 
questionable. Their experience in compounding medicine is 
generally nil. 

In cities the pharmacist often saves a patient from serious 
consequences of the doctor's incapacity, and in the country, 
practitioners, cognizant of their own ignorance, fall back 
upon proprietary combinations rather than risk the to them 
hazardous experiment of devising one of their own. It is 
difficult to take up a medical paper and not find examples of 
badly written prescriptions. It is fully as difficult to- find 
one that is properly written ; and as a result of this ineffi- 
ciency the country pharmacist has to keep a large stock of 
proprietary preparations and have an otherwise unnecessary 
amount of capital lying idle. To the inadequate education 
of physicians much mortality is due, and also much of the 
inefficient treatment of disease. For this reason it has come 
within my province to refer to it, but I do not care to have 
the charge rest entirely on my own authority. Evidence of 
the truth of what I say is so abundant that it can be found 
everywhere and every day, but I can do no more than adduce 
a few illustrations. 

In one instance a dram of morphine was ordered in a pre- 
scription. The druggist very properly referred it back to 
the doctor before dispensing it. He then learned that instead 
of a dram a grain was intended, but the physician, a young 
man, did not know how to write it. 

Here is a literal copy of a prescription that was ordered in 
1888 in a town in Connecticut: 

" Sulphur ii. 

Quicksilver 5 ss - 

Cream tartar | i. 

Nit. potassa ss. 

Molasses 1 viii. 

Take one tablespoonful before going to bed." 

The following, especially ordered to be put in a two-ounce 
bottle, is from Laramie City : 


" Potass, iodidi 5 ss. 

Sodii: carbonat 3 vi. 

Sodii salicylat J j. 

Aquae q. s ad. . | ii." 

The doctor who wrote that thought the solids occupy no 
space and would remain in solution ! 

In another instance the physician wanted a certain number 
of drops of a tincture to be used, so he wrote " gtt ivc," but 
how many drops were intended is unknown. 

This is from Connecticut : 

" Potass, of chlorate | i. 

Glycerine 5 i- 

Tinct. of iron sesquiklor. . | iii." 

The following are also from New England : 

" Tinct. Hullim ii. . 

Teaspoonful before meals." 

' ' Q Tinct. Rudullis two drams. 

Teaspoonful every three hours." 

" 3 Acid nitric, strong. 

Glycerine of each one ounce. 

To be used externally." 

Similar examples are to be found in every druggist's pre- 
scription book, but I need not multiply them. 

Referring to the number of medical graduates who have 
appeared before the Virginia Medical Board, Dr. Wood 
writes in the Therapeutic Gazette as follows : 

" From 1877 to 1887, inclusive, 36,097 graduates from medical 
colleges have entered practice in the United States. If these had 
all been efficiently examined according to the results just given, 
8,300 would have been rejected, or about one fourth the number. 
Our own opinion is that this proportion of rejections is less than 
it ought to be. We have gone over the class-books of the Medi- 
cal Department of the University of Pennsylvania, and find that 
one third of. those who entered that institution failed to get their 


degree. Practically, all of these people graduate at one college 
or another, and our own belief is that at least twenty per cent, 
more go through the university examination than ought to. Can 
any one estimate the amount of damage that nearly nine thousand 
improperly educated doctors can do in ten years ? " 

In the Medical News of November last year there appeared 
the following article, which is both instructive and suggestive. 
I quote it in full but it needs no comment : 

" At the present time, when the power of evil legislation seems 
to have the upper hand, and the endeavors of the regular profes- 
sion to obtain a State Medical Examining Board have been 
thwarted in the State of Pennsylvania by certain opponents of 
professional high standing, the following abstract from the Brook- 
lyn Medical Journal may carry to the public a sufficient idea of 
the frightful dangers which they allow to exist under the present 
law. It is very easy for a man, as brutally ignorant as some of 
these men seem to have been, to mistake the symptoms resulting 
from one of their poisonous doses for evidences of disease, and 
in this way to fail absolutely to attempt to remedy the evil which 
their criminal negligence has brought about. 

" The Virginia Board of Medical Examiners received the fol- 
lowing answers to questions put to graduates of medical colleges, 
who, under the Virginia law, applied for licenses to practise 
medicine in that State : 

" Describe the larynx. Ans. The larynx is composed of carti- 
lage. The oesophagus passes through the larynx. 

" What is the function of the liver ? Ans. Do not know. 

" Give tests for arsenic. Ans. Sulphuretted hydrogen is one. 
Don't know rest. 

" Give test for mercury. Ans. Do not remember. 

" Give dose of tartar emetic. Ans. Ten grains. 

" Give dose of sulphate of atropia. Ans. Hypodermatically (sic) 
ten grains ; by mouth sixty grains. 

" Give dose of corrosive sublimate. Ans. One grain. 

" How would you treat placenta prsevia ? Ans. I don't know 
what it is. 

" Give dose of powdered cantharides. Ans. Forty grains. 


" What is the source of iodine ? Am. It is dug out of the 
earth in blocks like iron. 

" Describe dengue or break-bone fever. Ans. By four appli- 
cants : A fever that comes on soon after the bones are broken. 
By one applicant : The patient should be cautioned against 
moving, for fear the bones should break. 

" Describe the peritoneum. Ans. It is a serous membrane 
lining the belly and extending into the chest, covering the heart 
and lungs. 

" Anatomical ignorance is bad enough, but the ignorance of 
doses of powerful drugs is terrible in its results. 

" It is hardly necessary for us to point out that the doses of 
atropine here given are sufficient in the one case to poison over 
twenty men, and in the other instance to kill, perhaps, over one 
hundred adults. The proper punishment for the man who would 
order forty grains of cantharides would be the administration of 
the drug in consecutive divided doses, lest the one should kill 
him too soon. 

" For every candidate applying for the right to practise medi- 
cine in the State of Virginia, where the people are intelligent 
enough to protect themselves, fifty similar and worse dealers in 
human lives enter this and other States, where no examination 
frightens them away ; and it is worthy of remark that the candi- 
dates in Virginia were not only ignorant of medicine, but were 
ignorant enough of their own mental state to dare the terrors of 
an examination. The provision of a State Medical Examining 
Board is not a measure to be engineered through the Legislature 
by the medical profession. It possesses far less importance to 
us than to the laity, for one doctor can generally grasp the calibre 
of another and protect himself. It is the people who suffer in 
silence, instead of protesting against such fearful homicidal prac- 
titioners. To-day the writer of this editorial read of a case 
where ergot was given in the early part of the second stage of 
labor, and yesterday he heard of a woman killed by a great, burly 
brute who was ignorant of the most simple form of obstetrical 
procedure. Yet with the perversity of human nature, the apothe- 
cary who dispenses poisons must be examined, and the man who 
orders the poison prescription goes unendorsed. Two means of 
remedying this crying evil are possible. The first, is to prevent 


the entrance of the money-grasping igaoramus into the sacred 
guardianship of life, home, and family. The other is for the 
laity to inform themselves of the standing of surrounding medi- 
cal schools, and refuse to recognize the degree of an institution 
turning out unqualified men or of one of which they know noth- 
ing. When the people become educated well enough to know 
when their wives, children, and those dearest to them are killed 
because of the employment of a miserable charlatan, then, and 
not till then, apparently, will an effort be made to prevent this 
' yearly sacrifice.' " 

Ex uno disce amnes. The above is but an example of ex- 
aminations that occur in every medical school in this coun- 
try, and the greater is the misfortune. 


Fair and reasonable criticism of all new remedies must be 
expected. It is a duty which physicians owe to the public. 
Directly any new agent is offered to the profession, with cer- 
tain properties alleged to it, a careful test of its value should 
be made. This can only be done by means of its adminis- 
tration and carefully noting its effects. If it prove to be all 
that was promised for it the community will benefit by its 
retention and use. If it turn out worthless it should be laid 
aside and forgotten. 

Examinations of this kind must be made, however, by 
persons qualified by education and experience. Several 
valuable agents have been introduced, such as cocaine, anti- 
pyrine, salicine and others, which through the ill-advised ex- 
ploiting of the newspapers have fallen into popular use, and 
dangerous and sometimes fatal results have followed. That 
is quite a different thing from tests made by competent per- 
sons and under proper conditions. 

When my discovery was first put before the public I fully 
expected that the Microbe Killer would be made no excep- 
tion to the general practice of the medical profession. I 
solicited investigation. I courted inquiry, and wished phy. 


sicians to test its merits in a legitimate way, and I was pre- 
pared to abide by their judgment as well as my own experi- 
ments. Many physicians did test it, and they were just and 
honorable in expressing themselves candidly on the value of 
the medicine. But, as I have in a former part of this book 
shown, some of my critics did not act with as much fairness. 
They who opposed me in Texas did not offer gratuitous op- 
position. They were not without some personal motive, and 
I cannot lay all that to the charge of the doctors as a body. 
It was reserved for a New York physician to attempt against 
me the most uncalled-for act of injustice. 

Some twenty years ago, or it may be less, one Dr. Newton, 
now dead, originated a small paper which he' called The 
Druggists Circular and Chemical Gazette. He left his inter- 
est to a young lad, who, having neither the capacity nor the 
inclination to maintain it, soon sold his property to others, 
and since then the paper has been characterized by some 
peculiarities. It depends largely upon its advertising 
patronage, and to its advertisers it evinces marked politeness. 
I am not one of its advertisers. 

A frequent contributor to the columns of The Druggists' 
Circular is a person named R. G. Eccles, an M.D., I believe, 
of Long Island College Hospital, 'a small medical institution 
in King's County. That gentleman is probably employed by 
the paper, and a part of his duty seems to be to supply 
articles for publication on new remedies. In those articles I 
have not met with one that was favorable to the subject of 
it, nor have. I seen among the subjects any that were adver- 
tisers in the columns of The Druggists Circular. On one 
occasion Dr. Eccles' production worked to the public ad- 
vantage, and if he were actuated by more discretion and 
impartiality he would probably not have fallen into some of 
the errors that seem to lie at his door. 

In September last year Dr. Eccles undertook to test the 
Microbe Killer, not as a physician should do by noting its 
effects upon the human system, but by sitting down in his 
own room and Although such a method is 


manifestly insufficient, and one upon which it would be 
worse than unjust to found a judgment either of praise or 
condemnation, the public for whose benefit such examinations 
are supposed to be made might be willing to take it for what 
it is worth. They would certainly do this if they found the 
examiner was impartial. They would even overlook any 
incompetency that might be evinced if there were at the bot- 
tom a genuine spirit of fairness and a desire to get at the 
truth. It is much to be regretted that these motives are not 
apparent in the alleged inquiry which Dr. Eccles made the 
basis of an article in his paper, wherein his zeal for his em- 
ployers got the better of his judgment, and he allowed him- 
self to use" language which, to say the least, was neither 
accurate nor moderate. 

Dr. Eccles puts forth pretensions, if I am correctly informed, 
to being besides a doctor of medicine an analytical chemist. 
He was not likely to risk his reputation, for presumably he 
considers it of some value, by writing a detailed description 
of a new remedy without having by close analysis deter- 
mined its composition. And this is what he said as a result 
of that examination : 

If the reader will mix the following together he will have a pro- 
duct identical with Radam's wonderful " Microbe Killer " (No. i, 
there being four strengths) at a cost of less than five cents per 
gallon : 

Oil of vitriol (impure) 4 drams. 

Muriatic acid (impure) i dram. 

Red wine, about i ounce. 

Well or spring water i gallon. 

Now before I proceed farther I wish to say that the 
Microbe Killer is prepared with none of the ingredients that 
Dr. Eccles names, and if he be, as he says he is, a practical 
chemist it is marvellous how he arrived at the result which 
caused him to make such a statement if he did arrive at it. 
For to my thinking it has much more the appearance of 
guesswork than of science. To strengthen my statement on 
this point the following affidavit is on record. 




William Radam, being duly sworn, says, I am the inventor of 
the Microbe Killer. I have never bought nor used one dollar's 
worth of sulphuric or muriatic acid to make my Microbe Killer, 
nor have I given the formula referred to to my companies now 
manufacturing this preparation. 

Subscribed and sworn before me 

this 24th day of December, 1889. 

Notary Public. 

Thus from Dr. Eccles' own statement it is apparent that 
he does not know the composition of my discovery, yet in his 
ignorance he goes on to condemn it, and in his overmuch 
zeal he attacks me personally, and uses language which is as 
unwarranted as it is vulgar. I do not propose to imitate his 
style of vituperation, but must follow up his observations for 
the information of the public. 

He sneers at my knowledge of botany and plant life, at 
my love of Nature and her operations, and at my not being a 
physician. This I can pass almost without notice. Pasteur 
is not a physician. Many persons who by their inventive 
genius have contributed largely to the progress of surgery are 
not surgeons. It would, however, be well if American physi- 
cians knew more of botany and Nature's laws than they do, 
for that subject is not a part of their curriculum, and very 
few of them are acquainted with the sources whence many of 
the agents that they use on their prescriptions are derived. 
A medical graduate of a foreign university told me that he 
once asked a doctor of medicine of a prominent American 
school something about the plant that produces aloes. He 
found him absolutely ignorant of the subject, and was so 
astonished that as opportunity offered he repeated his 
inquiry until he had catechised twenty physicians. Not one 
of them could tell him any thing about it. In the face of 
facts like that it comes with ill grace from an " alumnus " of 


such a school as the Long Island College to utter expletives 
against a man who happens to know more about plants than 
the average physician, even though the doctor is dependent 
on them for the most important articles in the Materia 

Taking his stand on the blunder that I make the Microbe 
Killer with sulphuric and muriatic acids, Dr. Eccles goes on 
to show the danger of those things. He says : 

Sulphuric acid or oil of vitriol is a slow but certain cumulative 
poison. The kidneys are unable to excrete it, and after absorp- 
tion from the stomach into the blood it has to return back to the 
alimentary tract lower down, and pass off with the faeces. Stille", 
in his " Therapeutics and Materia Medica," vol. i., p. 301, says 
of it : . 

" By habitual use this acid becomes very injurious to the teeth, 
even when greatly diluted ; it whitens them, indeed, but also cor- 
rodes them. It also, sooner or later, enfeebles the digestion, pro- 
duces colicky pains and diarrhoea, and impairs nutrition. 
Marasmus, and even death, may be the ultimate result of its use." 

I cordially endorse all this. Sulphuric acid is a poison, and 
for that very reason I object to the doctors using it as they 
do. I have shown before that most of the agents used in the 
practice of medicine are powerful poisons, and therefore 
objectionable. The Microbe Killer contains no such 

Dr. Eccles next admits that physicians know that they 
have no remedy that kills microbes, and he rashly ventures 
the assertion that the " hope of ever discovering a universal 
microbe killer, harmless to man, is positively ridiculous." 
Fifty years ago it would have seemed equally ridiculous to 
such men as Dr. Eccles appears to be, to think of sending 
messages across the Atlantic in an hour ; nevertheless, the 
observatories of Montreal and Greenwich can communicate 
with each other in three quarters of a second. It is rash 
to prophesy nowadays, even for persons of far higher 
capacity than the doctor. But he is not content with 


prophesying. He lets his notion carry him so far that he 
plunges presently into the following funny sermon : 

It is, he says, a common delusion of the ignorant that the 
word microbe applies to one common thing, whereas it is 
a general name for many things, just as is the word beast. 
Lions, tigers, dogs, horses, hyenas, rabbits, deer, and camels 
are all beasts. What will kill one may not kill another. What, 
however, will kill twenty unrelated kinds is pretty sure not 
only to kill all beasts, but all humans into the bargain. As the 
conditions of microbe existence are far more varied than that of 
beasts, the hope of ever discovering a universal microbe killer, 
harmless to man, is positively ridiculous. There are microbes 
that thrive in dilute acids as their natural home. These are 
destroyed by dilute alkalies. There are others that thrive in 
dilute alkalies, but perish in dilute acids. Every conceivable 
condition, where life is at all possible, has been made the favorite 
home of some kind. Some can stand more heat than man, while 
others can endure greater cold. Some live in water, some in air, 
and some on the surface of the water. Liquids of every kind have 
been invaded by them, and their conditions of life adapted to the 
same. The most appropriate conditions for the survival and pro- 
pagation of one kind prove destructive to many others. There 
are some that would be totally unable to thrive in the intestinal 
tract of man, but which would propagate rapidly therein after 
taking " Radam's Microbe Killer " a couple of days. A universal 
microbe killer would necessarily be a universal life destroyer. 
Long before the strength could be reached of heat or cold, elec- 
tricity or chemical agents, capable of destroying all microbes, 
the preparation would surely destroy the life of man. Their 
adaptations to unfavorable conditions transcend ours in every 
known way, because we are but one kind, and they a multitude of 
kinds. Our range of life singly transcends any of theirs. 

Such a diatribe as that shows the need there must be for 
this book. Mr. Eccles must read it. He will learn from 
it much about microbes that he evidently does not know 
now. It is indeed surprising that a physician, and one who 
wishes to be considered as a little more than a physician, 


should have made such an exposure of his own lack of in- 
formation. He terms me a quack ; he declares that I am 
ignorant, and he uses other arguments (?) of like kind to sus- 
tain himself. I am content to let any impartial, competent 
person read this book, and then the above quotation from 
Dr. Eccles' article, and let him decide whether the epithets 
mentioned are more applicable to Dr. Eccles or to me. 

Having of his own action thus succeeded in showing, first, 
that he is altogether mistaken about the composition of the 
Microbe Killer, and that in truth he does not know what it 
is ; and, secondly, his deficiency in knowledge concerning 
micro-organic life, he has the astounding audacity to go on in 
this most amusing fashion : 

Radam's claim is simply laughable to all who know the nature 
of microbes. If the man had ever known anything about the 
subject, so lamentable an aberration of mind would be clear proof 
of insanity, but in this ca'se, reasoning without knowledge is at the 
bottom of the trouble. 

This pleasant assumption by Mr. Eccles that he knows the 
nature of microbes is particulary ludicrous after reading his 
own testimony to the contrary, and I scarcely thirik it worth 
while to contend with him as to his assertion of my ignorance 
since this book speaks for me as well as for itself. If Dr. 
Eccles had ever learned what the Microbe Killer really is, and 
if he had tested its properties and found it wanting, he would 
not have seen the necessity of seeking to prejudice it by 
making personal attacks upon me. It may, under the cir- 
cumstances, have been the only expedient open to him, but it 
was a wretchedly bad one ; for it proves nothing except the 
worthlessness of his own case. 

Dr. Eccles is an utter stranger to me. His attack upon me 
was wanton and unwarranted. Unless the fact that I do not 
advertise in The Druggists Circular can be accounted a crime 
against me, I have never offended either him or his employ- 
ers. He may have been only obeying orders when he made 


his personal assault upon me in print. Of that I know noth- 
ing, and it is a matter of perfect indifference to me. But I 
have a right to protest against his action and his methods too, 
and I present them and the gentleman himself to the public 
as an illustration of the means and the men that have been 
employed to turn the attention of the people into wrong 
channels. They have failed, it is true, but their failure was 
due to my rectitude, not to the weakness of their efforts. 

The work of Dr. Eccles is not without its value when seen 
in this light. As a chemist and a physician he began his in- 
vestigation of the Microbe Killer evidently predetermined to 
condemn it. It was probably not his wish to be impartial. 
A just weighing of the merits of my discovery would per- 
haps not have suited the purpose of the conductors of The 
Druggists Circular. So if he had been actuated by an over- 
powering spirit of justice he probably would not have under- 
taken the alleged investigation. He had orders to curse, and 
he dared not bless ; at any rate, that is the most plausible 
explanation I can find of his conduct. He therefore began 
by declaring that the Microbe Killer is something which it 
is not. On that false assumption he proceeded to tell us that 
the things he himself suggested, not the ingredients of the 
medicine, recollect, were poisonous ; and he probably trusted 
to the inadvertence or the ignorance of his readers not to 
detect the trick. It was unfortunate for him that he did not 
withhold the evidence of his own want of knowledge of 
microbes, but it was a happy slip for me, since it pointed to 
the small value of any opinion that he could found on his 
own knowledge. He has, however, furnished a fair average 
example of the way in which attacks upon any new discovery 
that is in the shape of an innovation, are made. He illus- 
trates in his own person the kind of men who are engaged to 
make them. He shows how little reliance should be placed 
upon them when they appear under the circumstances and 
conditions that exist in this instance. And he demonstrates 
the too common trust in popular ignorance of a certain class 
of operators to have their assertions believed. 


My own experience in the world has led me to a sense of 
confidence in the fairness and intelligence of the public. I 
am assured in my own mind that even if such attacks as that 
made by Dr. Eccles upon myself gain credence for awhile 
they are cast to the winds by popular opinion directly their 
true character is exposed. If they serve to create a sensation 
for the moment, their permanent value is found in the addi- 
tional strength that comes to the reputation of a discovery 
when they are proved to fail. It is not by such efforts as 
those of Dr. Eccles that the public is deceived, and if they 
have any effect at all it is in a direction diametrically opposite 
to that which was intended. 


Adults, treatment of with microbe 

killer, 148 

All disease cured by microbe killer, 1 79 
Animals and Plants, relations of, 80 
Antiseptics and poisons, 60, 86 
Attacks on the microbe killer, 113 
Attacks on W. Radam, 205 

Bacillus of tubercle, how conveyed, 


Baldness, caused by microbes, 177 
Blood in yellow fever, 123 

Cancer, case of, 126 
Case of a lady at Austin, 156, 161 
Case of a lady at San Francisco, 157 
Case of M. C. Battey, 163 
Children, treatment of, 143 
Chronic disease, 133 
Consumption curable, 166 
Cooking, importance of, 174 
Corn-stalk disease, 7 
Creasote in tubercle, 173 
Cures, how effected, 138 

Death only a name, 4 
Demands for microbe killer, 104 
Diphtheria in New England, 25 
Disease is fermentative, no 
Diseases of man and other animals, 9 
Doctor's remedies for tubercle, 176 

Early days of the microbe killer, 106 
Easy application of microbe killer, 155 

Effects of climate on microbes, 13 

Effects of light, 15 

Effects of microbes on nature, 20 

Emperor Frederick, 124 

Enquiries by the French Academy of 
Medicine, 171 

Errors of medical education in Amer- 
ica, 63 

Experiences, personal, 69 

Experimenting on plants, 81 

Experiments, continued, 90 

External application of microbe killer, 
131, 145 

Factories established, 109 
Failure of medical science, 54 
Fermentation and putrefaction, 147 
Fermentation in the stomach, 89 
First patients, 94 

Florida, dangerous to consumptive pa- 
tients, 171 

Florida, unhealthiness of, 50 
Food of fungi, 78 
Food of plants, 78 
Fungi, nature of, 219 

Garden at Austin, Texas, 97 

Healing not curing, 156 
Heredity, 41 

History of my own sickness, 70 
Hot air in consumption, 176 
How I discovered the microbe killer, 




Indestructibility of matter, 5 

Inoculation, 39 

Italian laws about consumption, 169 

James Kavanaugh, case of, 189 
Kissing, danger of, 35 

" La Grippe," doctor's treatment of, 


" La Grippe," history of, 208 
Leprosy a common disease, 184 
Leprosy and consumption compared, 

Leprosy and the microbe killer, 182, 


Leprosy, contagion of, 183 
Leprosy in Louisiana, 194 
Leprosy, inoculation for, 34 
Leprosy, inoculation of a prisoner, 187 
Letter from a lady at San Francisco, 


Letter from J. Kavanaugh, 196 
Letter from M. C. Battey, 164 
Letter from Portland, 131 
Lichens, description of, 79 
Life, adapted to conditions, 19 
Luxury, effects of, 69 

Maltreatment for yellow fever in 

Florida, 121 
Marriage affinities, 43 
Medical swindlers in New York, 178, 


Microbe killer as a prophylactic, 228 
Microbe killer, development of, 86 
Microbe killer, how to use it, 198 
Microbe killer in diseases of women, 


Microbe killer, nature of, 145 
Microbe killer, qualities requisite, 88 
Microbe of diphtheria, 16 
Microbe of influenza, 28 
Microbe of pneumonia, 14 
Microbe of yellow fever, 47 
Microbes affected by seasons, 132 

Microbes, are they animal or vegetable ? 

Microbes, does heat or cold destroy 

them? 225 

Microbes, effects of medicines on, 222 
Microbes, habitat of, 46 
Microbes, how taken into the system, 


Microbes in food, 10 
Microbes in milk, 32, 37 
Microbes in summer diarrhoea, 36 
Microbes in tetanus, 18 
Microbes in the atmosphere, 10 
Microbes in the body, 7 
Microbes in the soil, 17 
Microbes in tubercle, 172 
Microbes of cholera and intermittent 

fever, 29, 47 
Microbes of malaria, 30 
Microbes, origin of, 12 
Microbes, pedigree of, 216 
Microbes, universality of, 24, 40, 141 
Microbes, vitality of, 26 
Mortality in the United States, 172 
My discovery unusual, 137 
My troubles, 112 

Nature as an instructor, 2 
Nature's action unceasing, 4 
Nature's laws, dangers of neglecting, 


Nature's methods, 53 
Necessity of mental labor, 3 

Obelisk in Central Park, 21 
One medicine for all disease, 107 
Organic life, primitive forms of, 217 
Origin of organisms, 6, 217 

Paid de foie gras, 174 

Phthisis, spread of, 204 

Physicians poorly educated, 62 

Plants, functions of, 78 

Pneumonia on the Croton Aqueduct, 


Practice better than theory, 58 
Precautions in the sick-room, 175 



Rapid spread of the microbe killer, 

1 20 
Refusal of doctors to test microbe 

killer, 121 

Relief is not cure, 152 
Reward of $100, no 

Sargasso, 79 

Schemes of the enemy, 115 
Scientific surgery, 84 
Sickness, cause of, 23 
Status of the doctors, 1 36 
Successes and sacrifices, 98 
Sunlight, effect of, 51 
Surgeons necessary, 153 

Tubercle curable, 166 
Tubercle in town and country, 173 
Typhoid at Yale, 27 
Typhoid in New England, 25 

Value of time in treating disease, 107 

Water, filtration of, 26 

What constitutes a good surgeon, 130 

Where Radam and the doctors differ, 

Whooping-cough and diphtheria, 1 5 

Yellow fever in Florida, 120 


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